What’s This Talk about Green Jobs?

There’s been talk of Green jobs in Halifax lately.  Recently, the United Nations Association in Canada has opened applications for young people to join the Canada Green Corps ( I didn’t even know this existed until last month).

But what are Green Jobs?

According to the folks at Good Work Canada, a green job is one that genuinely contributes to a more sustainable world.

But whoa now, what is a sustainable world? I always appreciate how The Natural Step breaks it down :

In a sustainable society, there is no systematic increase in (I put key words in bold):

  1. the concentrations of substances from the earth’s crust (such as fossil CO2 and heavy metals) in nature
  2. the concentrations of substances produced by society (such as antibiotics and endocrine disruptors) in nature
  1. physical degradation of the earth (such as deforestation and draining of groundwater tables),

…and in that society …

  1. … there are no structural obstacles to people’s health, influence, competence, impartiality and meaning.
Mobile food market workers. Green job focusing on health and food security

That is what a sustainable society is, so back to creating that society through green jobs.

Green jobs can be found in all sectors of the economy and industries from government, to non-profit, farming, and education and even fashion. I like the way the writers at Good Work put it: “The company or organization can either be in a ‘green’ sector (e.g. solar energy), or in a conventional sector but making genuine and substantial efforts to green its operations.” In other words, a job can be green because of what it produces or offers or how produces it, even if what it is offering doesn’t have to do with the environment directly.

An example of a company that is in a green sector could be a solar panel company. Solar panels use the power of the sun to create energy rather than coal which causes destruction to the earth and pollutes the air.

An example of a conventional company that is green because of its operations or how it runs could be with a beauty supply business. This business might use all recycled materials in their packaging, uses as little water as possible in creating their products.

The goal of the Canada Green Corps  is to offer meaningful work experience in the green economy.   If anyone needs help applying to this or similar opportunities, let me know. I would love to help.


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