For the first time ever, the annual Greenbuild International Conference was held outside the United States, in Toronto from October 4 to 7. Greenbuild, launched in 2002 and organized by the U.S. Green Building Council, attracts a diverse international group of building industry representatives, architects, and product manufacturers. This year, the Green Jobs Summit session of the conference highlighted several keynote speakers including Ken Neumann, National Director of Canada for the United Steelworkers. A new study by McGraw Hill Construction was presented, surveying design and construction professionals and trades workers in the U.S.. It defined “green jobs” as those involving more than 50% of work on green projects or designing and installing uniquely green systems. It found that skilled trades such as carpenters, HVAC/boilermakers, electricians, concrete/cement masons, and plumbers are expected to see the greatest growth in green jobs; 15% of these trades today are green jobs, and this is expected to increase to 25% in three years. 30% of green job workers said that they needed major training when they started, and most report that formal education and training programs will continue to be needed.
The Canadian Construction Sector Council (CSC) reported results of their own survey in March 2011, regarding trends, training and skills levels in Canada’s green building industry. The CSC’s annual Construction Looking Forward survey for 2011 was released in April 2011 and forecasts offer a detailed nine-year scenario of workforce supply and demand by trade, province and region.
Press release of the McGraw Hill Construction Green Jobs report is at: http://www.construction.com/AboutUs/2011/1004pr.asp
Canada’s Construction Sector Council (March 2011) Green Sustainable Building in Canada: Implications for the commercial and residential construction workforce can be ordered at no cost from:
Construction Looking Forward 2011 National and Provincial reports are available at: http://www.csc-ca.org/en/products/2011-construction-looking-forward-forecast-reports-and-highlights