This Day On The Street
Continue to site
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

Green Energy Creates Jobs? Prove It

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Green energy equals job growth - you probably read it in a headline and assumed it was true.

With U.S. unemployment at 9.6%, Americans are looking for reasons to feel good about the direction the country is headed. Now that Google (GOOG) is backing the development of an offshore wind market and the United Steelworkers are saying that China's emerging alternative energy sector is taking U.S. jobs, green energy seems like it could jolt the job market.

The idea that green energy could create enough jobs to propel the economy is lacking a critical element: data. Other than the annual reports alternative-energy trade groups use to lobby the government, there has been little effort to study trends in green energy hiring.

That's about to change, but not overnight. The effort to show that green energy is bringing a noticeable number of jobs to the U.S. economy is just getting started, and it could be a few years before the data is reliable.

This year the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which tracks every job created in the U.S., received money from the federal budget to study the green energy job market. Until results are released, Americans are taking a leap of faith when it comes to betting on green energy. And so far, progress in creating a new green economy has been spotty.

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act passed last year allocated more than $80 billion to expanding renewable energy sources, improving the U.S. power grid and adding more eco-friendly cars to U.S. highways. The goal was also to create jobs.

Vice President Joe Biden's office recently released a report about Recovery Act programs that cited 100 key projects, including the 20-megawatt flywheel energy storage plant developed by Beacon Power (BCON) in Stephentown, N.Y. The project aims to add 20 construction jobs and 40 permanent jobs.

The same day Beacon Power touted its inclusion in the Biden report through a press release, the Nasdaq Stock Market informed the company that its shares might be delisted because they fell short of the $1 minimum bid price. Beacon Power shares, currently trading at 35 cents, haven't eclipsed the $1 mark in more than a year. Beacon Power said this week it was denied a second loan commitment from the federal government.

Wind power was another focus of the Biden report, even though 2010 has been one of the worst years on record for the U.S. land-based wind power market.

1 of 3

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
AAPL $127.60 2.28%
FB $83.09 2.87%
GOOG $535.38 2.16%
TSLA $205.27 -0.74%
YHOO $44.66 0.46%


DOW 18,034.93 +208.63 1.17%
S&P 500 2,100.40 +19.22 0.92%
NASDAQ 4,994.6020 +62.7870 1.27%

Partners Compare Online Brokers

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs