Green Jobs Lag Behind Training, Some Say

DETROIT, Feb. 2 (UPI) — Training for green jobs in Michigan may be getting ahead of the job market, where environmentally friendly jobs are still scarce, various observers say.

“A training program doesn’t create a job,” said Cindy Buckley, executive director of training at Kalamazoo Valley Community College, The Detroit News reported Tuesday.


Economist Don Grimes, a researcher at the University of Michigan’s Institute on Labor, Employment and the Economy, said, “this idea that we have this ready trained work force that can produce this stuff and is unique, that’s just wrong.”

Some workers, like Avison McKelvey, recently trained as a wind power technician, said the job market in green jobs may force a move from Michigan.

“I may have to leave and, with the economy in Michigan, that remains to be seen,” McKelvey said.

Others are hoping the millions of dollars in state and federal funding for training for green jobs will pay off.

The sector now accounts for 3 percent of Michigan’s workforce, the News said.

“The green jobs areas is still small. But cars were small in Detroit in 1910. By 1920, there was a mass migration of people to work in car factories,” said Andy Levin, Michigan’s deputy director for the Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Growth.

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