While negativity about green jobs, and the zombie that is Solyndra, are being used as political fodder for the election year, it turns out that traditionally Republican and swing states are actually showing some of the most growth in jobs from the clean power and energy efficiency sectors. That’s according to a new report from a cleantech-focused venture firm in San Francisco, DBL Investors, who have backed Tesla Motors, solar thermal company BrightSource and solar installer SolarCity.
Out of the ten states that are showing the fastest growth in green jobs, four of them are Republican-led and four are swing states — only two are Democratic-leaning.
Out of the ten states with the largest percentage of green jobs, out of the overall workforce, six of them are Republican-led, while one is a swing state.
Seven of the 17 states with the fastest growing amount of green jobs are swing states.
The total numbers of green jobs is sizable in states with the largest populations, regardless of political affiliation:
All of these green jobs figures indicate that on a state and local level, green jobs are not such a politicized issue. Jobs are jobs. Republican Governors, like former Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour, Kansas Governor Sam Brownback, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal, Texas Governor Rick Perry are actively highlighting the economic and job-creating potential of the clean power and energy efficiency industries in their states. And the green jobs backlash, that is being touted in Presidential campaign speeches, is more a Capital Hill, election-cycle issue — not a state and local issue.
The report concludes: “We need to hear less from Capital Hill, and more from Main Street.” That’s good news for cleantech entrepreneurs, who might be getting down from all the negativity in the election season. If your company, or sector, can create jobs, you’ll still have some state and local support.