This influx of capital and clean energy initiatives have already produced a significant number of jobs, and will continue to do so as companies and governments allocate more and more resources to the green economy. Climate Power recently reported that since the IRA was passed in August 2022, over 272 new clean energy projects, creating 170,606 jobs, have been announced across 44 states.
With such a large number of clean energy projects underway across the country, there are many examples to choose from of green industries that are generating significant job opportunities. One industry that is critical to the EV (Electric Vehicle) revolution, and which has been helped along significantly by the IRA, is the United States’ domestic supply of processed cathode material for battery manufacturing. Late last year, RedWood Materials Inc. announced a deal with Panasonic to supply Panasonic’s battery plant in Kansas City with billions of dollars of domestically processed cathode material. Earlier this summer, Ascend, a Massachusetts-based company, agreed to a billion-dollar deal with an anonymous automaker to recycle batteries into cathode material. Ascend’s CEO, Mike O’Kronley said, “When you step back and look at it, we haven’t seen this level of investment in manufacturing in the United States in decades.” (U.S. manufacturing’s construction spending, at a $190 billion annual rate, is running at double the rate it was at around this time last year). O’Kronley said that the $480 million in matching grants from the Bipartisan Infrastructure law has been critical to Ascend’s success and its manufacturing capabilities. Similarly, Redwood Materials Inc.’s CEO, J.B. Straubel, said that the Inflation Reduction Act helped propel Redwood along their trajectory, “like what happens if you attach a rocket engine to supersonic airplane [sic].” These new plants come with thousands of jobs, and are in what Redwood Materials and others have called the “Battery Belt”, “a new manufacturing corridor from Michigan to Georgia... where hundreds of GWh a year of battery cell production capacity will be built and start operating between now and 2030.”
Meanwhile, REPEAT predicts that over 1.5 million jobs will be generated in the solar energy sector by 2030, and around 250,000 jobs in wind power.