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LACI Report Lays Out Path to Create 600,000 Green Jobs Countywide by 2050

For Immediate Release
Contact: anthony@laci.org

Report Makes Key Recommendations Needed at Local, State Federal Level to Achieve Goal & Ensure an Equitable, Inclusive Green Economy

LOS ANGELES, CA – A new report released on Friday by the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI), researched by HR&A Advisors, and funded by the California Workforce Development Board (CWDB), and the City of Los Angeles Workforce Development Board, offers an in-depth analysis of the landscape of green jobs in Los Angeles County and lays forth a course of recommended actions on workforce investment to grow an economy in Los Angeles that is greener, stronger, and more inclusive.

Of the overall 40 percent job growth estimated by HR&A for Los Angeles County by 2050, the report finds that green jobs could grow nearly 80 percent, from 338,000 to 600,000 jobs over the same time period. The study also analyzes and details the makeup of the green jobs that exist across Los Angeles County today. For example, in addition to traditionally considered green jobs like solar installers, LACI and HR&A note that there is a broader spectrum of green jobs which are critical to supporting sustainability, ranging from electricians and contractors to engineers and software developers. 

The report also provides a breakdown of four recommended actions needed for green jobs, including how green jobs can drive an equitable recovery due to the COVID-19 economic crisis:

  • Accelerate Economic Recovery: Drive economic recovery and boost green job creation through increased public investment in infrastructure, such as the Transportation Electrification Partnership’s $150 billion proposed federal stimulus package.
  • Bolster the Workforce Pipeline: Change local, state, and federal funding criteria to update and bolster existing workforce training programs to better prepare individuals with green jobs knowledge and resources for growing sectors such as EV charging, and build capacity to create more responsive and nimble workforce training for future segments of the green economy.
  • Advance Equity and Inclusion: Increase underrepresented populations in green industries through project labor agreements and community benefit agreements, and support workforce training designed for underrepresented populations through paid apprenticeships, outreach programs, grants and scholarships, and soft skill development programs.
  • Clearly Define Green Jobs and Track Metrics: Improve evaluation of green industry performance metrics, including reassessing the Bureau of Labor Statistics industry and occupational classifications, and conduct a new and California-specific Green Goods and Services (“GGS”) survey to gather information about regional and statewide industry strengths. 

“LACI and our partners came together to study the future of green jobs in Los Angeles and what’s needed to ensure we create an inclusive green economy here in Los Angeles and beyond,” said LACI CEO Matt Petersen. “We will pursue the reports recommendations with policymakers at every level of government—including with our new partners in the Biden Administration—to invest in workforce development to create opportunity in every community as we pursue racial, climate, and economic justice.”

“Addressing the climate crisis is an environmental necessity, a moral imperative, and a massive economic opportunity with the potential to unlock widespread prosperity for a generation,” said Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti. “LACI’s new report opens a window into what a more sustainable, equitable future might look like –– as long as we follow through on our commitments and make the right investments in building a green economy that works for everyone.”

“I’m really proud of the partnership we have with LACI and our work together. At the core of our relationship is a shared mission to create a pipeline for quality green jobs and make them accessible to communities that have been underrepresented in cleantech,” said California State Senator Maria Elena Durazo (D-Los Angeles). “ I’m looking forward to scaling up this successful model especially during this time of change and opportunity.”

“It took a pandemic to get us clean air in Boyle Heights and other communities that live with the negative impacts of pollution — that shouldn’t have to be the case,” said California State Assemblymember Miguel Santiago (D-Los Angeles). “This report shows that we can have clean air every day of the week if we move towards the green economy the team at LACI has laid out.”

The OurCounty Sustainability Plan envisions a prosperous LA County that provides opportunities for all residents and businesses and supports the transition to a green economy,” said Los Angeles County Chief Sustainability Officer Gary Gero. “Understanding the pathways to promote inclusive growth across the changing economy is important and that’s why this deep dive analysis on careers that support family sustaining wages is a big deal.  We applaud LACI on the release of this report.”

“The findings related to job quality standards and community benefits for public investments are consistent with the high road agenda that has been adopted by the California Workforce Development Board (CWDB) and our regional, industry-based, worker-focused job training partnerships that bring together workers, employers, and communities to collaboratively address job quality and access in their industries, improve competitiveness in a carbon-constrained economy, and build economic, social, and environmental resilience for the state,” said CWDB Executive Director Tim Rainey. “We believe that all jobs will be impacted by climate change, and our High Road Training Partnerships use an equity, climate and jobs strategy in pursuing a just recovery from the economic impacts of the pandemic, and serve as a national model for recovery that is necessary for the state to hit the goal of an inclusive and robust carbon neutral economy by 2045.”

At a virtual event held on Friday the report was discussed with a panel that included California State Senator Maria Elena Durazo (D-Los Angeles), California State Assemblymember Miguel Santiago (D-Los Angeles), and leaders in workforce development and business that are focused on expanding green job opportunities within Los Angeles. 

The clear message from the report is that public and private sector leaders must unite now to ensure that the post-COVID recovery bolsters a Southern California economy that is greener, more inclusive, and more resilient. 

Read the full report here at alaincubator.org/greenjobsreport/.