30% of Energy Jobs are in Efficiency

Energy Efficiency sector jobs account for one-third of all energy jobs

Approximately 2.25 million workers in the U.S. across construction, manufacturing, and other services spent some or all of their time working with energy-efficient technologies in 2017. 

The US energy economy is classified into four sectors as below. The first two of those sectors make up the Traditional Energy sector:

• Electric Power Generation and Fuels Production
• Transmission, Distribution and Storage
• Energy Efficiency
• Motor Vehicles

US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) has no specific data sets that exclusively count jobs in this sector. Energy Efficiency employment covers both the production of energy-saving products and the provision of services that reduce end-use energy consumption. These services include not only the manufacture of ENERGY STAR appliances but also building design and contracting services that provide insulation, improve natural lighting, and reduce overall energy consumption across homes and businesses. However, the report only captures employment with certified energy efficiency products.

Based on a comprehensive analysis of employer data collected in the fourth quarter of 2017, the 2018 U.S. Energy and Employment Report finds that the Traditional Energy and Energy Efficiency sectors in 2017 employed approximately 6.5 million Americans out of a workforce of approximately 145 million. These sector jobs increased in 2017 by about 2%, adding 133,000 net new jobs, roughly 7% of all those created in the country. 

Energy Efficiency Jobs Across Sectors

Construction 

  • The majority of Energy Efficiency employment (57%) identified is found across construction firms (1.27 million). 
  • Of the 7.1 million construction workers in the United States, about 18% worked to support the construction or installation of energy-efficient technologies.

Manufacturing

  • Of the 3,222,487 jobs found in relevant energy manufacturing sub-sectors —such as lighting, household appliances, or HVAC equipment manufacturing—about 315,578 (10%) workers manufactured energy-efficient products. 
  • The Energy Efficiency jobs in the manufacturing sector refer only to the manufacture of ENERGY STAR®-rated appliances or other products such as energy-efficient building and lighting services

Wholesale Trade

  • About 48% of the eight million wholesale trade, distribution, and transport jobs across the nation support energy-related employment. 
  • Of these 3.8 million jobs, 4% of workers were engaged in efficiency-related work in 2017

Professional and Business Services

  • 42% of professional and business service jobs support the energy industry through activities including software development, finance, management, and legal services. 
  • Of these sub-sectors, 4% of employees, or 449,800, who worked to support energy-efficient products and services in 201

Occupational Distribution

The majority of workers in Energy Efficiency were employed in installation or repair positions (32%) or administrative positions (26%) in 2017. Nearly 17% of workers were classified as production/manufacturing positions.

Sector Growth

Energy Efficiency employers report a projected growth rate for employment in 2018 of about 9 percent. Construction employers, in particular, report expected Energy Efficiency job growth of 11 percent by the end of 2018.
 

The growth of energy efficiency jobs and the penetration of energy efficiency technologies continues to be an important indicator of economic development opportunities and increasing competitiveness for American industries. This is particularly evident in the construction and manufacturing sectors. The production and installation of energy efficiency equipment and materials continue their rapid deployment across the United States. The increased utilization of these technologies in the construction industry, where 80% of firms now use these technologies for a majority of their revenues, up from 64% just 2 years ago, is an indicator of the speed of adoption.