Green Careers In Vermont – Environmental Job Opportunity Quick Facts

What is a Green Career?

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), green jobs are either:

  1. Jobs in businesses that produce goods or provide services that benefit the environment or conserve natural resources.
  2. Jobs in which workers’ duties involve making their establishment’s production processes more environmentally friendly or using fewer natural resources. (U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2012)

O*NET research (Dierdorff et al, 2009) provides the following definition of the green economy: “The green economy encompasses the economic activity related to reducing the use of fossil fuels, decreasing pollution and greenhouse gas emissions, increasing the efficiency of energy usage, recycling materials and developing and adopting renewable sources of energy.”

Rather than a general characterization of defining green jobs, as the BLS does above, O*NET focuses on the greening of occupations. This is defined by O*NET as follows: “The greening of occupations refers to the extent to which green economy activities and technologies increase the demand for existing occupations, shape the work and worker requirements needed.”

Green Increased Demand Occupations: The impact of green economy activities and technologies is an increase in the employment demand for an existing occupation. However, this impact does not entail significant changes in the work and worker requirements of the occupation. The work context may change, but the tasks themselves do not. O*NET identified 64 of these occupations.

Green Enhanced Skills Occupations: The impact of green economy activities and technologies results in a significant change to the work and worker requirements of an existing O*NET –SOC occupation. This impact may or may not result in an increase in employment demand for the occupation. The essential purposes of the occupation remain the same but tasks, skills, knowledge and external elements such as credentials have been altered. O*NET identified 60 occupations in this category.

Green New and Emerging: The impact of green economy activities and technologies is sufficient to create the need for unique work and worker requirements which results in the generation of a new occupation relative to the O*NET taxonomy. This new occupation could be entirely novel or “born” from an existing occupation. O*NET identified 46 occupations in this category.

A complete list of occupations in each category can be found at Note that not every identified occupation exists in large enough numbers to report in Vermont.

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