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Michigan's "Green Jobs Report" Wins National Award Report Finds Michigan Uniquely Positioned to Become Nation's Leading Green State by Diversifying Economy and Creating Jobs in Renewable Energy Sector

Contact: Mario L. Morrow 517-272-9280
Agency: Licensing and Regulatory Affairs

JUNE 24, 2010 - Governor Jennifer M. Granholm announced today that the Michigan Department of Energy, Labor & Economic Growth received a national award for its "Green Jobs Report," which the state released last year in its first-ever scientific study on Michigan's role in the emerging green economy.

The award was presented at the National Labor Market Information (LMI) conference held in Minnesota and Michigan was one of the three category winners for the 2010 Product/Service Awards for Economic & Demographic Research. Accepting the award on behalf of DELEG, was Labor Market Information & Strategic Initiatives Director Rick Waclawek who led the team that prepared the report for Governor Granholm.

The "Green Jobs Report," only the second of its kind in the nation, defined the Michigan green economy as industries that provide products or services in five areas: renewable energy, increased energy efficiency, clean transportation and fuels, agriculture and natural resource conservation, and pollution prevention or environmental cleanup.

"The Green Jobs Report has generated international interest in our state," Granholm said. "Findings in the report underscore that Michigan is headed in the right direction by focusing on the emerging green economy and investing in a highly-educated workforce for clean energy jobs."

Michigan is accelerating workers' transition into new jobs through the Green Jobs Initiative. That initiative, part of the state's No Worker Left Behind program, is a $6 million investment of federal dollars designed to increase the number of green industries and businesses in Michigan.

Andy Levin, Michigan's Chief Workforce Officer and DELEG Deputy Director, said the report is an important baseline measure for tracking future green industry growth.

"Clean transportation and fuels are the largest green economy sector in Michigan, with 41 percent of green jobs. This reflects both our automotive heritage and a potential center of growth as hybrid and electric vehicles develop," Levin said. "While the report does not attempt to project green job growth, it suggests that there is huge potential for expansion over both the short and long term."

Most encouraging from the report, was that Michigan's 109,000-plus green jobs were already in place before Michigan adopted a requirement that 10 percent of our energy come from renewable sources by 2015.

DELEG Director Stanley "Skip" Pruss, who serves as Michigan's Chief Energy Officer, said, "We have laid an extensive groundwork to capitalize on clean energy technology on all fronts: solar and wind manufacturing, advanced battery storage and other renewable energy sources. As home to some of the world's most advanced energy companies, we are excited to forge new partnerships, and utilize new funding sources and tools that will advance Michigan as a leader among states embarking on an ambitious clean energy path."

Other findings in the report: 
  • from 2005 to 2008, a sample of 358 green related firms added more than 2,500 jobs to Michigan's economy, an employment expansion rate of 7.7 percent compared to the total Michigan private sector average of negative 5.4 percent during the same period; 
  • among the renewable energy production firms in that sample, the growth rate hit 30 percent; 
  • green jobs pay well; thirteen of the top 15 sectors of green employment have weekly wages above the overall private sector weekly average; 
  • education and training are key for green employers; in multiple focus groups, employers emphasized the need for basics in math and reading with additional skills to be acquired on-the-job or in school depending on the precise green job in question.

To view the award-winning report, visit: and click on "Michigan Green Jobs Report" on the right. The Workforce Information Council State Representatives had a lengthy process for reviewing award entries.

The nominations were first judged by peers from outside of the respective regions, resulting in finalists from six geographic regions in each of the three categories. The final step was a national panel of judges from three organizations - Brandt Information Services; C2ER/Council for Community & Economic Research; and, The Lewin Group. Joining Michigan at the award ceremony were winners in the other two categories: Connecticut in the Electronic Tools category for their "Connecticut's Re-employment Portal" and Missouri in the Collaboration/Consultation category for their "Connections Public Outreach Partnership".

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