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CO Tech Group Predicts Job Growth from Feds’ New Climate Goal

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The American Jobs Act is intended to spur growth in the energy-efficiency sector, which would reduce fossil-fuel consumption in buildings. (Larry Johnson/Wikimedia Commons)
The American Jobs Act is intended to spur growth in the energy-efficiency sector, which would reduce fossil-fuel consumption in buildings. (Larry Johnson/Wikimedia Commons)
 By Suzanne Potter/Derrick Hinds - Producer, Contact
April 27, 2021

DENVER -- Colorado will see major job growth in the solar, wind and energy-efficiency fields as a result of the administration's climate goals and infrastructure plan, according to tech leaders who are active in the fight against climate change.

At a leaders summit last week, President Joe Biden committed the U.S. to reducing carbon emissions 50% by 2030. His infrastructure bill, called the American Jobs Plan, boosts many climate-focused programs.

Quinn Antus, co-founder and executive director of the Signal Tech Coalition, said Colorado is well-positioned to benefit from these changes.

"The more swiftly we transition to our clean-energy economy, the more competitive the U.S., and Colorado specifically will be for generations to come," Antus contended.

Antus said before COVID-19, the clean-energy sector was adding jobs at twice the overall job-growth rate, and predicts it now will bounce back quickly.

The infrastructure bill is intended to put people to work improving the energy-transmission grid, retrofitting buildings to make them energy efficient, and producing more electric vehicles and charging stations. Opponents of the plan say it costs too much and will cost jobs in the oil and gas industry.

Sam Shriver, strategy and content director for the Coalition, said the climate goals and the infrastructure program will spur the private sector to jump in.

"As soon as there's a move by the public sector like the Biden administration is making now, you mitigate all that perceived risk," Shriver explained. "So the financial community is ready to make this happen. I think it's an exciting time."

The federal climate plan has a lot in common with Colorado's Climate Action Plan, passed in 2019. The plan committed the state to reduce its greenhouse-gas emissions by 26% by 2025, and 50% by 2030.

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