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How to land a green job in 2014

green jobs marchers
Green for All

You want an environmental job. And who wouldn’t? You get to go to bed at night knowing you’ve done something good for the world. You can be smug about your job with less nobly employed friends. You can move out of your parent’s basement. These are all good things.

Still, you wonder. Are there any educated guesses about what employers are thinking? We’ve got you covered. Our prognosticator has traveled throughout the green employment community and returned with some predictions to get you going.

1. Compliance with rules and regulations is still a strong eco-job driver.

Businesses still invest most in environmental activities when they are required to do so. Government still invests most in insuring that existing laws, regulations, codes, policies, and programs are implemented effectively. For these reasons, the vast majority of environmental professionals work within the existing infrastructure of compliance with regulations for clean air, health and safety, clean water, solid waste, and hazardous waste, as well as with zoning laws and building codes.

Although the job growth in 2014 will be slower in these core environmental area than in a few emerging ones, the starting base of jobs is much larger than in newer niches. The total number of new jobs in compliance-driven sectors will be a significant number even under slow growth.

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Remake your living

Tips for landing a green job

Ah, the daily grind: An endless progression of dreary days with that pathetic guy in the next cubicle who spends half his time complaining and the other half in loud personal conversations for which the phrase "too much information" was invented. And that boss of yours? One shudders. But fear not. You can remake your living and land a green job -- all in one fell swoop. Here are some career-planning basics to get you started. Got goals? One-year periods are just about perfect for career planning. Annual plans are just long enough to accommodate multiple projects that require lots …

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Poll: Green jobs

What green careers do you want to learn more about?

Last week, I answered a reader question about wind power jobs. I'm interested to know what other careers you'd like me to investigate. Take this handy poll (below the fold) to help pick my future column topics!

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The jobs, my friend, are blowin' in the wind

Wind power industry hiring in huge numbers

Dear Kevin, I've heard lots of hype about wind power jobs, but I don't know what kind of jobs we're talking about. Can you describe a few? Thanks for your help. (I love Grist.) Amy K.St. Louis Dear Amy, Grist loves you back. Your letter goes straight to the top. The hype is very real. Reliable correspondents from the American Wind Energy Association's massive June conference in Texas report that everyone was talking about a shortage of trained and experienced people. I believe that "we need people yesterday" was the exact phrase. So while "the answer" may not be blowing …

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Stocking the green entrepreneur's toolbox

Two resources to get you started

Hello, future green enterprise owners. Following my column on being a green entrepreneur, some of you have emailed me for more advice on getting a green biz going. There are so many great websites with resources. Here are a couple you might want to check out: I like Green VC quite a bit. It's updated all the time and generally has helpful content. Spend some time there over a few days and you'll feel like part of the community. Over at Bootstrapper, there's a list of 100 green entrepreneur resources. As always, I'd love to hear your stories, questions, and …

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Green-collar jobs are here on earth

Listen to NPR today for a conversation about green-collar jobs

The drumbeat of interest in "green-collar jobs" just gets louder. Today at 4 p.m. EDT, I'll be on Wisconsin Public Radio's "Here on Earth" call-in show, along with Keith Schneider from the Apollo Alliance. The show is an hour long, and you can listen live or later here.

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Are you the next green entrepreneur?

Ten entrepreneurial lessons to get your green biz going

Is it your career ambition to start your own green business or nonprofit endeavor? Join the club, my friends. Among recent college graduates and late-Boomer career-changers, "starting my own enterprise" is high on the list of preferred careers. And why not? When I turn on NPR in the morning, I'm often greeted by an ad (I mean, an "underwriting announcement") for the Kauffman Foundation, celebrating "the entrepreneurs who start businesses and change the world." Such is the power of the entrepreneurial idea. Hard to imagine a foundation buying air time to celebrate "the people who take jobs at the DEP …

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Let's take a call from our listeners

Listen as I talk green collar jobs on NPR

Interested in the promise of -- and questions about -- the growing "green collar jobs" movement? Listen Wednesday, May 28, at 11 a.m. EDT as I discuss it on NPR's Radio Times, a popular call-in show from WHYY in Philadelphia, the station that also brings the nation Fresh Air with Terry Gross. Bracken Hendricks of the Center for American Progress will also be part of the program. Listen live (or later) here.

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RE: Turn on investments

Finding jobs at the Ceres conference

Photo courtesy Cheryl Levine Last week, I attended the Ceres conference in Boston. My table was sitting down to lunch when the person next to me whispered, "It's Al Gore!" Cool, sez I! We were already pretty excited about the prospect of hearing from Van Jones (president, Green for All), Theodore Roosevelt IV (managing director, Lehman Brothers), and Michael Eckhart (president, American Council on Renewable Energy). Having the Goracle drop in unannounced seemed like a perfect way for Ceres President Mindy Lubber to cap off an already great event. Alas, it was not to be. The should-have-been-President was actually just …

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Environmental management careers

College grads hit the green job market — here’s what they’ll find

Photo: fluffbreat Another Earth Day has come around, and that means college graduations are just a few weeks away. Soon-to-be alumni throughout the nation are dusting off résumés, poring over job listings, and then moving back into their old bedrooms at home "for a little while." I predict a progression of messages from dear old Dad. (Welcome back. Clean the garage. Don't get too comfortable. Get a job already.) With so many aspiring eco-job-seekers entering the world of gainful employment, it seems like a good time to take the temperature of the environmental-management job market. To find out what's going …