Thursday, June 4, 2009

Do Greencollar Jobs Pay $76,000/year or $12.00/hour?

Yesterday Green Sheet had a story with a ridiculous headline:

I wasn't going to link to it but today CNN has an article I thought would be a good juxtaposition. Green Sheet quotes something called the Carbon Salary Survey and appears to have lost his critical thinking abilities. Take a look at the job titles/sectors in the (first annual) survey:
...SECTOR                  PERCENT   AVG SALARY
Charity/Public Sector 9 $64,500
Advisory/Consultancy 34 $64,000
Consumer/Retail Goods 3 $84,000
Engineering/Construction 6 $68,500
Financial/Legal Services 11 $116,000
Industrial/Utility 7 $83,500
Marketing/PR/Media 2 $57,500
Natural Resources 3 $91,500
Renewable Energy/Technology 16 $76,500
Transportation 0.4 $86,500
Other 10 $76,500

Analysis 18 $64,000 $11,000
Broking 2 $86,000 $32,000
Consulting 31 $66,000 $10,000
Engineering 5 $62,000 $6,500
Legal Services 1 $135,000 $36,500
Management 20 $97,500 $27,000
Marketing/Sales 8 $78,500 $25,000
Media/PR 1 $63,500 $11,500
Trading 6 $93,500 $120,000
Other 8 $74,500 $26,500

<1 year 2 $61,500
1-2 years 11 $60,000
2-4 years 31 $73,500
4-6 years 25 $91,000
6-10 years 20 $98,500
>10 years 11 $131,000

Bachelors degree (non-green) $83,500
Bachelors degree (green-related) $67,500
Masters degree (non-green) $86,500
Masters degree (green-related) $69,500
Professional green qualification $74,000
I have mocked this kind of thing in the past:

Ten Best Green Jobs for the Next Decade
#1 Be Al Gore.
Just kidding, that's not on the list.
Kids, Some of These Green-Collar Jobs Pay Pretty Well

From the Times of London:

Tony Blair to earn £15m in two years

TONY BLAIR is busy preparing for talks in the Middle East on a subject of global importance. The subject is not the humanitarian crisis in Gaza, but climate change, in a speech to be delivered to a conference in Abu Dhabi sponsored by a Swiss bank....

Green Is the New Color of Lobbying

Now these are living wage greencollar jobs!
From the Wall Street Journal:

WASHINGTON -- Lobbying for green energy has become a red hot business here...
And my favorite:

"Spend money to aid economy on climate" -UN official
and San Francisco is leading the way.

From Reuters:
Governments should use public money aimed at deflecting the threat of recession to spur savings by backing energy efficiency too, the head of the United Nations Environment Programme, Achim Steiner, said.

UNEP is hosting 154-nation climate change talks this week in Monaco...
These are good jobs, paying good wages....
...Mayor's climate aide gets $160,000 a year

...San Francisco has at least two dozen other city employees already working directly on climate issues at a cost to taxpayers of hundreds of thousands of dollars.

"If there are 25 people working on climate protection issues for the city, that's a good start," Newsom spokesman Nathan Ballard said. "Ten years ago, there probably weren't any. It's smart policy to have one point person at the highest level of city government to coordinate all 25 of them."

In addition to the director of climate protection initiatives in Newsom's office, San Francisco has an Energy and Climate Program team of eight people in the Department of the Environment, who combined earn more than $800,000 a year in salary and benefits, including a "climate action coordinator."

At least 12 San Francisco Public Utilities Commission staff members work on climate issues related to water and energy, including a $146,000-a-year "projects manager for the climate action plan."...
In contrast, from CNNMoney:

The new 'good' job: 12 bucks an hour
In the Midwest, communities race to replace dwindling auto jobs with renewable energy ones, but workers will have to sacrifice on their pay.

Massive investment in renewable energy could ultimately create 4 million manufacturing jobs. But for the workers in the bottom rung of this movement, the shift to green jobs could very well mean a pay cut of nearly 60%, a trend spreading across the entire manufacturing sector.

Many of the entry-level jobs making green energy components start at $12 an hour, much less than the now extinct $28 an hour job that had allowed high school-educated workers in the auto sector to achieve middle class status.

"Particularly at the lower end, these are not very good jobs," said Philip Mattera, research director at Good Jobs First, a labor-friendly research group, also acknowledging that the renewable energy sector paid wages that were "all over the map.">>>MORE

I've also covered this aspect of greencollar claims, with specific names and numbers:

Greencollar Jobs: Greenery may create jobs—but not the ones its boosters think

Discussion of greencollar jobs is usually short on specifics so I'll do a mini data-dump for you.
Three major wind companies have recently set up shop in Arkansas. Turbine maker Nordex will pay an average $17.00/hr. Blade manufacturer LM Glasfiber was recently advertising for production tecnicians at $12.13/hr. and Polymarin Composites will pay its 830 employees an average of $15.00. sources
In contrast there is a cottage industry that pays considerably more, from our May 30, post

"Green Collar Jobs: What Do they Pay?"

With all the political positioning of climate legislation as 'creating' jobs it is startling how reticent the proponents are about actual numbers. From doing due diligence I know some of the numbers but public sources that have specific wages that I can link to aren't common.

Some of the jobs are well paying. For example the insiders at First Solar have sold $1.1 Billion worth of stock in the last 15 months.
(bless those German hausfraus paying the feed-in tariff)

If you are interested, use the search blog box, keyword Greencollar.