DC Green Bank’s Top Five Energy Jobs of the Future

                                     Eli Hopson - CEO of DC Green Bank

Today we have an exciting guest organization that will be discussing the future of energy work – the DC Green Bank.

DC Green Bank’s mission is to provide access to capital, growing the clean economy to develop a more equitable, resilient, and sustainable DC. Established under the leadership of Mayor Bowser and the City Council by the District's Green Finance Authority Establishment Act of 2018, DC Green Bank develops innovative financial solutions to support District businesses, organizations, and residents in the journey to a cleaner future for all. DC Green Bank invests in solar energy systems, green buildings, infrastructure resilience, and transportation electrification in line with its values of Sustainability, Clean Economy, and Inclusive Prosperity.

As always, don’t forget to take our Reduce Energy Use DC pledge here!

How DC Green Bank is driving workforce development in the District

As DC transitions to a clean economy, DC Green Bank will help support hundreds of millions, if not billions, of dollars of investment in clean infrastructure in DC. As we make those investments, we will focus on our core value of Inclusive Prosperity, which means that our investments put local, small, minority, and woman-owned businesses at the center of our work to ensure that our local businesses are developing the skills and expertise they need to be a part of the transition. Our focus on working with District Certified Business Enterprises (CBEs) ensures that not only are DC residents employed as part of the projects we finance, but that essential skills for the economy of the future are learned and retained in our communities.

When we talk about workforce development and Inclusive Prosperity, we must also highlight our commitment to ensuring that our staff and our investments reflect the community we serve. We have hired an Equal Access Advocate and launched a community impact initiative pilot to make sure that we are not only speaking to large developers, property owners, or businesses but also deeply engaging with non-profit, faith, and community groups as well as small businesses that are all too often frozen out of private capital markets -- even when they demonstrate a strong commitment to a clean future and want to do their part to build a cleaner, greener, and more resilient District. The investments made in these community institutions reinforce the demand for a highly trained and well-compensated workforce right here in DC.

DC Green Bank’s existing projects have already created numerous jobs. What does the future hold?

It is an exciting time to be involved in the Clean Economy. Under Mayor Bowser’s leadership, the District has set aggressive climate, energy, resource efficiency, and resiliency goals that will require upwards of $2 billion of investment to meet, bringing together both the public and private sectors. That level of investment means many things, but chiefly it means jobs. We estimate that for every $200,000 spent in the District, we can create at least one Clean Economy job. To meet the climate and environmental challenges we collectively face, we see the development of cutting-edge technologies and leadership at the federal and District level who are actively spending billions of dollars on building a clean and safe future for all. DC Green Bank will be making large investments and raising additional capital to fund this transition. By working with partners, we ensure that DC is poised to be a hub for the jobs of the future and lead the way as the nation’s capital.

DC’s jobs of the future

Based on recent data, we know that the clean energy sector accounts for nearly 50% of America’s entire energy workforce and 3% of the nation’s overall force. With these numbers only set to rise, the District can be home to the most highly trained, well compensated, and diverse workforce in the nation, especially since these jobs cannot be outsourced. To help us all see that future a bit more clearly, here is a list of five indicative jobs of the future that DC Green Bank’s investments are likely to support:

1. Solar Photovoltaic Installers
· With DC Green Bank’s commitment to rapidly increasing solar deployment in the District, we anticipate the need for a strong workforce ready to build, install, and maintain solar photovoltaic systems.
· Nationwide, these jobs are expected to increase by more than 50% in the next decade.

2. Clean Transit Operators
· DC Green Bank is committed to working with partners to electrify the District’s public transportation systems, which means we will need trained transit drivers and operators to ensure our city runs smoothly and cleanly.
· Nationwide, these jobs are expected to increase by nearly 10% in the next decade.

3. Green Construction Managers
· DC Green Bank’s investments mean that new and existing buildings will need skilled construction managers that are ready to ensure that the future is clean and resource efficient. We can build a workforce of construction managers right here at home ready to fill these emerging roles.
· Nationwide, these jobs are expected to increase by nearly 10% over the next decade.

4. Electric Vehicle and Charging Station Technicians
· DC Green Bank knows that the future requires that we electrify everything, and that includes personal transportation. As we invest in a 21st Century electric vehicle charging infrastructure – and President Biden has committed the nation to build 500,000 chargers across the country by 2030 – more District residents will choose to buy electric vehicles, rapidly increasing the demand for technicians to repair and maintain those vehicles. The same goes for the District’s large municipal fleet of vehicles.
· Nationwide, these jobs are expected to increase rapidly as both District and federal leaders commit to a clean transportation future.

5. Weatherization Technicians

· DC Green Bank is committed to investing in rapidly accelerating the efficiency of the buildings in the District, fully understanding that approximately 70% of the emissions in DC come from buildings. With that in mind, weatherization is vital to increasing the efficiency of buildings and bringing down heating and cooling costs, as well as emissions. We will need an expanded DC workforce to meet these needs.
· Nationwide, these jobs are expected to increase by approximately 5% over the next decade.