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Season 5, Episode 121

How unions can add more members during clean energy boom

E2

 

Guest Name:


Bob Keefe

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E2 

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Bob Keefe, Executive Director of Environmental Entrepreneurs (E2), joined the America’s Work Force Union Podcast to talk about the positive impact the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) has made on manufacturing jobs in America. He also spoke about how unions can increase their membership during the clean energy boom through IRA-funded projects.

It has been nearly two years since the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) was signed into law. Since then, companies in 40 states that are working on roughly 300 clean energy projects have announced the creation of roughly 100,000 manufacturing jobs. Keefe explained as the clean energy transition continues, the manufacturing sector, which is one of the most unionized sectors in America, is making a comeback. He added that new, high-paying jobs in the solar manufacturing industry are being made possible through governmental funding. As a condition of the funding are training requirements, which pave the way for unions to lead the transition.

With many projects underway, Keefe discussed the potential economic revolution that could begin with the clean energy boom. He explained why it is important for lawmakers to ensure the boom continues, no matter the political party in office. Keefe explained the potential impact of proposed spending cuts, and how these investments could dry up if politicians are not careful with their proposed cuts. If no cuts are made, Keefe estimated that the total investment into the projects could reach $2 billion thanks to the IRA.

Finally, Keefe talked about the impact of the clean energy boom on Ohio, which includes 18 projects, 4,854 jobs, and more than $7 billion in investments. He cited the Green Jobs America report from E2 and discussed how Ohio has been impacted by the clean energy transition. E2 is a national, nonpartisan group of business leaders, investors and others who advocate for smart policies that benefit the economy and the environment. He talked about the number of workers in clean energy, energy efficiency and clean vehicle jobs, which all rank inside the top 10 of America. If unions and states can make the necessary changes, they can lead the clean energy transition and bring more quality union jobs to Americans. 

Listen to the show above for more from Keefe on jobs created by the clean energy transition.


America’s Work Force is the only daily labor podcast in the US and has been on the air since 1993, supplying listeners with useful, relevant input into their daily lives through fact-finding features, in-depth interviews, informative news segments and practical consumer reports. America’s Work Force is committed to providing an accessible venue in which America's workers and their families can hear discussion on important, relevant topics such as employment, healthcare, legislative action, labor-management relations, corporate practices, finances, local and national politics, consumer reports and labor issues.

America’s Work Force Union Podcast is brought to you in part by our sponsors: AFL-CIO, American Federation of Government Employees, American Federation of Musicians Local 4, American Alliance for Manufacturing, Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield, Columbus/Central Ohio Building and Construction Trades Council, Communication Workers of America, International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Allied Workers, International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Allied Workers Local 50, International Brotherhood of Teamsters, International Federation of Professional and Technical Engineers, International Union of Bricklayers and Allied Crafts, International Union of Painters and Allied Trades District Council 6, Ironworkers Great Lakes District Council, The Labor Citizen newspaper, Laborers International Union of The National Labor Office of Blue Cross and Blue Shield, North America, North Coast Area Labor Federation, Ohio Federation of Teachers, Survey and Ballot Systems, United Labor Agency, United Steelworkers.

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