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Growth of Electrician Jobs Will Continue to Increase; More Training Programs Needed

Electrification of everything is on the rise with the intention of quickly reducing carbon dioxide emissions and helping to prevent dangerous global warming. The rate of installation of electric vehicle chargers, solar panels, induction cookers, heat pumps, transmission lines and everything else needed to make the world 100% clean by 2050 has increased significantly. All of this work requires the skills of electricians. Unfortunately, we have a shortage of electricians in the country which is getting worse as the workforce ages. Training will need to be ramped up across gender and diverse populations in order to keep up with the high growth of electrification.

Close up of electrician's hands testing wires

As we look at the current workforce and see that, for example, less than 2% of electricians are women, plans need to be set in place to encourage more women to explore a career in this field. The same goes for many people who have been majorly underrepresented in large part because they were never encouraged or motivated to explore this type of job. More investment in high school vocational education can help pave the way for more interest, along with paid apprenticeships or other training post-graduation.

Job Outlook
Some of the most lucrative jobs in the next decade will be electricians, wind farm technicians (expected to grow 68%) and solar installers (expected to grow 52%). The average salary for a green job is $76,530 per year, which is 31% higher than the average salary for the US workforce ($58,260). The information is part of the analysis of the PromoLeaf Green Jobs Report. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that electrician jobs will grow by 7% through 2031. 

Some areas of the U.S. have already begun to implement unique training programs for many types of jobs in renewable energy. Chicago, IL for instance, recently began a training program for underserved and disadvantaged communities that not only pays wages for the training, participants may also get assistance with transportation, childcare and tutoring. 

More states and cities need to adopt similar programs because with the current workforce, there will not be nearly enough electricians to do all the jobs needed in this decade. Bringing awareness to electrician careers to a diverse population and providing more training programs will certainly help, but it will need to happen quickly to keep up with the green energy boom.

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