February 4, 2010
By Judith Stein The political tsunami in Massachusetts has concentrated the Democratic mind on the economy and employment. President Obama had thought he could turn his attention to health care while banking on the trinity of finance, retail, and housing for jobs and revenue. Massachusetts was proof that the old recipe is bankrupt. Obama's State of the Union proposals to ease some of the anxieties of retirement, education, and child care will help at the margins, but they skirt the job question.
March 30, 2012 |
Green jobs - or, as our president calls them, the "jobs of the future" - have been notoriously tough to define and count. The federal Bureau of Labor Statistics recently did it, though, and now it's the result that's notorious. Facing an admittedly difficult project, the BLS created a definition that is so broad as to make it a meaningless measure of the green economy. Here's a sneak preview: There are 33 times as many green jobs in the septic tank and portable toilet servicing industry as there are in solar electricity utilities.
January 11, 2010 |
Raymond Manuel has just two more checks coming, then next month his unemployment runs out. The situation led Manuel, 37, a married father of three who was bundled in a puffy tan coat, to sit in the first chair of the front row in the gymnasium of the Dixon House on a recent afternoon for an orientation on a green-jobs training program. The pilot program, held at the South Philadelphia social-service center, is part of a federal initiative to get people like Manuel, stuck in the mud of joblessness, outfitted for a new career and back to work.
June 15, 2010 |
Government is not especially good at picking winners in the free market, including in the energy sector. Despite a lot of hoopla and subsidies, for example, corn-based ethanol has proven for the most part to be a nonstarter. On the other hand, entrepreneurs have discovered that recycled cooking oil can be used to fuel vehicles, and many major energy companies are looking at algae as a potential alternative-energy resource. Today, we have state and federal subsidies being poured into solar and wind power, although these may not turn out to be the most practical options (certainly not in every region of the country)
November 20, 2013 |
THE HEAD of the federal AmeriCorps program joined Nutter administration officials in City Hall yesterday to unveil PowerCorpsPHL, which connects disadvantaged youth with training and temporary jobs in city departments. The first crop of 43 participants, who are all 18 to 24 years old and were recommended by a city agency or nonprofit, started work in October. Many have criminal records, were in foster care or have other difficulties getting ahead. The jobs are supposed to help beautify the city by having workers do things like cleaning parks, planting trees and educating residents about watershed preservation.
March 23, 2012 |
Liz Robinson long ago reconciled herself to the naysayers, the folks who thought that green jobs were some figment of a tree hugger's imagination. "I think people don't understand," said Robinson, executive director of the Energy Coordinating Agency , a Philadelphia nonprofit that trains people to perform energy audits on houses and buildings in the city. Maybe more will now. On Thursday, the mother source of all job statistics, the office that provides research data to battalions of labor economists and academicians, released its first report on green jobs and services.
August 23, 2009 |
The winds of change blew across the rapidly evolving green-technology landscape earlier this year, taking with them nearly 200 jobs from Lower Bucks County. The latest generation of wind turbines needs bigger blades than the 140-foot-long, 6-ton models that Gamesa Technology Corp. Inc. has been making at its factory in Fairless Hills. So company officials announced 184 layoffs in January and said the blade work would be transferred to a larger Gamesa plant in the center of the state, near Altoona.
February 27, 2009 |
Today, in Philadelphia, the White House Task Force on Middle Class Families is holding its inaugural meeting. Our charge is to assess current polices and develop new ones aimed at helping the middle class, the economic engine of this country. The economic-recovery package that President Obama signed into law last week contains more than $20 billion for investment in a cleaner, greener economy, including $500 million for green job training. The task force's first order of business is to evaluate how investing in green jobs will help build a strong middle class.
February 26, 2009 |
While Vice President Biden launches an initiative in Philadelphia tomorrow focusing on using green jobs to raise living standards for middle-class Americans, Suechada Poynter, 39, will be crawling around the basement of a Philadelphia rowhouse. Checking for air leaks and improperly functioning furnaces in her job as a home energy auditor, Poynter will not be available to talk to Biden, but she has a message for him: "Green jobs have opened a lot of doors for a lot of lower-class people to get into this field," said Poynter, a Thai immigrant and mother of seven who lives in Philadelphia's Logan section and earns $11 an hour for her work.
October 15, 2009
TWO POINT 6 million U.S. jobs were lost last year, and unemployment continues to climb, with many experts predicting the rate will exceed 10 percent by early next year, if not sooner. The situation is far worse for younger workers, minorities, single moms and millions of others living on or below the poverty line. While faith organizations continue their work serving those in need in their communities, many groups also recognize that we need to support serious efforts from our political leaders to reduce poverty.