Published on 2011/12/23

Politics Slow Green Jobs in Los Angeles

In his December 21 article, Neon Tommy’s Senior Tech Editor Jacob Chung looks into the effectiveness of workforce development programs for green jobs in Los Angeles. He focuses on the work done by Long Beach City College, who won a California Clean Energy Workforce Training Program grant and successfully trained 237 people, but only found jobs for 130.

Despite the promise of a booming green jobs sector, which led many un- and underemployed people to register for LBCC’s program, Chung said political games in Washington have cost many their time and their promise of a job.

Though the college successfully trained 80% of their program participants to become highly-skilled home retrofitters and upgraders, the shelving of a government program called PACE due to the lingering debate about climate change’s existence killed the industry these people were being trained to fill.

Rola Halawanji, who played a major role in developing the program at LBCC, told Chung the closure of PACE significantly altered the market and applicability of the skills they were teaching.

“Going into this, we actually thought that we wouldn’t train enough people for the jobs that were coming.”

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