Given the existing need to raise awareness about developing a sustainable economy and to encourage the creation of “green” jobs on the island, Labor Secretary Miguel Romero outlined Tuesday the island’s so-called green sector job profile to identify industries and work opportunities in that area.
Two years ago, the Puerto Rico Labor Department submitted a competitive proposal to the U.S. Department of Labor under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act’s “State Labor Market Information Improvement Grants” program to look into establishing green jobs on the island and its potential to resolve some of the problems affecting the economy.
The agency enlisted the help of the Energy Affairs Administration, the Infrastructure Financing Authority, the Occupational Development and Human Resources Council, Puerto Rico Trade, Puerto Rico Industrial Development Company and the State Workforce Investment Board.
During a forum Tuesday, the inter-agency group presented the results of the survey on the “Puerto Rico Green Industries and Occupations Profile” as well as the “Green Jobs Occupational Information System.”
According to the report, green jobs are those that reduce the environmental impact of companies and economic sectors to sustainable levels. This includes jobs that help protect ecosystems and biodiversity, seek to reduce energy, materials and water consumption through highly effective strategies, reduce carbon dependency, and minimize or completely avoid the production of all forms of waste or contamination.
Romero said it can be concluded that the “greening” of jobs impacts three general work categories: green occupations most in demand; green occupations with improved skills; and new and emerging green occupations.
“This important forum will help us establish a clear and precise framework in the development of a green sector in our economy that is currently in its first stage, but has a broad potential for future development,” Romero said, urging employers and employees, as well as college students, to learn about the initiative through the program’s website.