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143,000 Workers In Texas Advanced Energy Industry

An estimated 143,023 workers are employed in the Texas advanced energy industry, and the expected growth rate this year is 7%, which could bring the total to 152,000. Currently, the number of advanced energy workers is twice that of airline workers in Texas. It is also more than the number employed by petroleum refining and chemical manufacturing, and almost the same as the number working in construction.

800px-GreenMountainWindFarm_Fluvanna_2004Advanced energy workers are employed in fields such as energy efficiency, wind power, solar power, biofuels, grid technology, and advanced vehicles.

The advanced energy data comes from a report released by the Texas Advanced Energy Business Alliance. “Advanced energy is a large and growing industry in Texas, and it’s paying off in real jobs for Texans. “The reliability and cost benefits of advanced energy technologies are driving growth in the industry, and employers expect to add jobs in the coming year. That’s good news for our companies and for the Texas economy,” explained Suzanne Bertin, Executive Director of Texas Advanced Energy Business Alliance (TAEBA).

At the growth rate of 7% mentioned above, about 9,334 new advanced energy jobs would be added to the Texas economy this year. About half of the 143,000 work in energy efficiency. Almost 39,000 work in the advanced electricity production field, which includes wind and solar power. Of the nearly 39,000, about 44% work in wind power, which is not so surprising considering that Texas is a wind power leader in the US. There are also about 9,500 workers who are employed in the corn ethanol field.

19,000 are employed in advanced  transportation, so they spend all or part of their time working on hybrid, plug-in hybrid, and natural gas vehicles.

Almost 80% of the Texas advanced energy workforce is male and 43% are racial or ethnic minorities. About 10% of Texas advanced energy workers are veterans.

Some critics have said that clean energy receives too much government support, but in Texas there are almost 15,000 companies working in advanced energy. They employ many people, so it isn’t only government activity that is providing these jobs. Also, when we think of the energy industry, it isn’t only coal mining and petroleum — increasingly it is represented by clean energy jobs.

Image Credit: LeafletCC BY-SA 3.0

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