Our Renewable Energy Workforce Future

Most people don’t know what my complete technology background is comprised of, over the past 30 + years of my life.   Today… most of you will find out.  🙂

The renewable energy field is rapidly growing and changing our global energy strategy.  The US is home to many existing solar and wind farms that need a trained workforce to plan, architect, engineer and operate these utility grade energy generation solutions.  Does the average citizen really understand the potential and progress of our global renewable energy strategies?  Probably not…  One of my favorite series of educational programs come from the Discovery  Channel.

Check it out at – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nYTfo_rVkYo

Awareness, understanding and ultimately knowledge will drive people looking for new career opportunities to pursue a new job in this exciting field of work.  There is a growing demand for people with the skills necessary to work in this innovative 21st century field of work.  There is sound data which supports very strong  job growth in this field.  I have been fortunate to have worked with and on renewable energy solution such as solar and wind over the past 30 plus years of my life, while I pursued my IT career.   It is has been my life long passion and I have seen the value and benefits to changing our approach to energy conservation and generation.

The question many ask is how many jobs are needed in this evolving and growing field by 2020 ?  or 2030 ? and beyond ?  What initiatives are underway to retrain our aging or changing workforce ?  A great example of a government initiative that really can work is…

http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2014/09/18/new-solar-energy-job-training-program-veterans

The job US Bureau of Labor and Statistics wind energy job growth data is also telling.  An example is just the wind turbine technician jobs….

“Employment of wind turbine service technicians is projected to grow 24 percent from 2012 to 2022, much faster than the average for all occupations. Because wind electricity generation is expected to grow over the coming decade, additional technicians will be needed to install and maintain new turbines. Job prospects should be excellent for qualified candidates.”

As legacy wind turbine farms are operated, maintained and upgraded, the need for skills to plan, architect, engineer and operate them are only going to grow even faster through the next decade.  Let’s also not forget all the new offshore wind farms currently being planned up and down the US coastlines.  Many leases have been awarded to regional energy companies such as Dominion Resources in Virginia.

Awareness and formal education of our children in our public school system will give them a sound understanding and head start in potentially choosing this exciting field of work.  Many of these jobs pay quite well.  An example data point is a wind turbine technician.  The median annual wage for wind turbine service technicians was $45,970 in May 2012.  That is a 21st century living wage job for the average member of our workforce looking to leverage their experience and/or change career fields.  I also believe passionately in manufacturing tools to support the renewable energy industry worldwide.

A number of my friends and colleagues in the IT field have asked me where my background in renewable energy came from.  I worked on my first solar system solution on my home in 1981, when I was 13 years old.  My father insisted to a salesman selling a solar solution, that I be allowed to help install a solar system on our home to provide supplemental heat for our home.  I remember being really scared helping the technician, but excited at the opportunity.  I also worked with Wind Turbine technology starting in 1988 when I was in the US Navy Reserves.  I have kept up to date on the technologies involved and that has translated to a distinct interest in working in this field later in my life.

Give yourself some credit for experience in secondary fields of work.  Are you ready to leverage these experiences and tackle a new career path in the renewable energy field ?

Rich Pleasants

Actively searching for property on rail line in Albermarle County VA

We are currently searching for land to acquire, to build our Research and Development and Lite Manufacturing facility. Our plan is to acquire this property by March 2015 and open our R&D and Manufacturing facility by January 2016. Stay tuned for updates.

Potential Locations for Renewable Energy Academy in Crozet VA

We are currently investigating three potential locations for the education division of Pleasants Industries, Inc.  All three of these locations are in the Crozet Virginia area.   Our goal is to open the Academy by February or March 2014.  Stay tuned for an announcement soon.