A study titled 'Many Shades of Green' published by nonprofit group Next 10 which researches the economy, environment, and quality of life issues in California has found that between January 2008 and 2009, jobs in the green sector grew by three percent, which was three times the total employment growth in the state (one percent). In all, the Green Economy in California now accounts for 174,000 jobs according to the report, up from 111,000 in 1995. The growth of green jobs since 2005, in particular has been comparable with the growth in software jobs.
Growth has been highest in the Bay Area and San Diego regions in 2008-09, with employment in the green economy of these regions going up by eight and seven percent respectively in the observed year. Bay Area has also been the leader in terms of growth over the 1995-2009 period, recording a 109 percent growth in the core green economy (businesses that provide products and services treated as alternatives to carbon-based energy, or conserve energy and natural resources, or reduce pollution and repurpose waste), followed by Sacramento (103 percent).
The report finds that recent employment growth has been exceptionally strong in energy generation, energy storage and clean transportation. Growth in the Bay Area, for example, is largely driven by growth in the Energy Storage sector, as the region accounts for 45 percent of California's employment in that sector. Since 1995, employment has surged 790 percent, adding nearly 2,230 jobs with 580 new jobs coming in 2008-09 alone.
From January 1995 to 2009, Energy Generation has accounted for the largest job increases adding nearly 20,000 jobs across the state. In the Sacramento area, the Energy Generation sector brought roughly 1,900 new jobs, marking an increase of nine percent between 2008 and 2009. Energy Generation has also given significant boost to employment in the Inland Empire, Central Coast, North Coast and Sierra regions.
Over the span of the same one year, employment in Clean Transportation surged six percent, driven primarily by increased activity related to motor vehicles. Clean Transportation hubs have been found to emerge in Orange County, the Bay Area, San Diego, and the Inland Empire, while activities associated specifically with fuels and vehicles have been spread across the different regions. The Los Angeles Area has been a hot spot for green clean transportation jobs, increasing 33 percent since 1995 and nine percent between January 2008 and 2009.
Commenting on the above trends, F. Noel Perry, founder of Next 10 said, There are very few business sectors in a state as large as California that employ people across every region. The emergence of this vibrant Core Green Economy can be attributed to California's history of innovation, as well as our forward-looking energy and energy efficiency policies.