Saturday, May 15, 2010
Green Economics in the Midwest (or lack thereof) - By Contributing Editor, M.
After attending the Third Annual Chicagoland Green Collar Jobs Summit at Illinois Institute of Technology, it became apparent that Chicago and the state of Illinois are way behind in terms of “Green Jobs’, jobs that promote environmentally friendly occupations, or ones that lead to using our resources in a more efficient way. Take for instance, Virginia’s Green Jobs tax credit and California’s Green Tech Tax Exemption. Green Jobs for America also has an amazing role in boosting the economy through the green approach.
These are quite important steps, and I am glad that those states are taking them, but what about Illinois? We have plenty of space, a large community of people that are looking for meaningful job training and work, and as I learned at the conference, investors that want to invest in green businesses in the Midwest; but only if financially viable and supported by state policies. We have plenty of people willing to train workers, and plenty of people that are conscious and passionate about living and working green. We just have to persuade our legislators that it is worthwhile to push initiatives like this from the policy side; there are a lot that companies and communities can do on their own, but only so much.
Check out Chicagoland Green Collar Job Initiative for information about the green Economy in Chicago.