E4TheFuture’s recently released 2019 report, “Energy Efficiency Jobs in America,” demonstrates the impressive growth of the energy efficiency workforce, which now numbers more than 2.3 million people. The annual report is based on data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and is a comprehensive survey of thousands of businesses, using a methodology developed for the U.S. Department of Energy.
Energy efficiency jobs represent the largest job-creating category in the energy economy, accounting for 76,000 of the sector’s entire growth of 151,700 jobs last year. In fact, the energy efficiency industry employs more Americans than the entire fossil fuel industry in 41 states and the District of Columbia and twice as many nationwide.
Who Are Energy Efficiency Workers?
Energy efficiency workers include those who manufacture and install high-efficiency systems, controls, windows, and insulation in existing and new homes and buildings. They design and construct high-performance buildings that earn certifications such as LEED, and upgrade and repair heating, ventilation and a conditioning (HVAC) equipment. These workers also manufacture and install ENERGY STAR-certified appliances, lighting, ceiling fans, and other equipment that ultimately saves homeowners, businesses, schools, and other organizations money and helps reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Across the 50 states, energy efficiency jobs are growing, and more than 99 percent of U.S. counties have such jobs. The detailed national summary of the report shows that California leads the nation in energy efficiency jobs, with more than 300,000, and North Carolina, Massachusetts, and Virginia rank in the top 10. Additionally, America’s top 25 metro areas have 928,000 energy efficiency workers and nearly 28 percent of all U.S. energy workers are employed in the sector.
Insulation Industry-Specific Data
The advanced materials and insulation sector within the energy efficiency jobs category includes insulation and employs 357,765 people nationwide. This information tracks with similar data on the U.S. insulation industry released earlier this year in conjunction with the Insulation Industry National Policy and Advocacy Conference. That report, “Contributions of the Insulation Industry to the U.S. Economy in 2018,” revealed that 39,000 people are employed within the $16 billion U.S. insulation industry. In addition, a total of 550,000 jobs in the U.S. and $33 billion in payrolls were generated by the U.S. insulation industry.
Why It Matters
The leadership of state and local governments as well as Congress plays an integral role in expanding energy efficiency in America, which ultimately advances sustainability and reduces the operating costs of buildings and homes, providing direct financial savings to home and business owners and fueling job growth for the energy efficiency sector. The continued leadership of America’s policymakers is critical to ensuring that energy efficiency remains a top priority for the nation.