David Alvarez Continues Walk the Walk Tour: Fueling the Clean Economy

David Alverez-001Joins Environmentalists and Workers on Jobs of San Diego’s Future

Councilmember David Alvarez continued his ‘Walk the Walk Tour’ today on the rooftop of the IBEW union hall with environmental advocates and electrician journeymen and apprentices who are training for solar installation jobs.

“San Diego’s clean economy is driving our future job growth,” said Alvarez. “Solar, wind and biofuels are reshaping the energy economy. These form the new triple bottom line of our economy: good paying jobs, good for the environment and good for our community.”

According to the San Diego Regional Economic Development Corporation, San Diego is one of California’s most concentrated areas of cleantech employment with more than 850 companies. Between 1995-2010 employment in the sector increased 73 percent, while total regional employment grew 26 percent. These companies represent 10 percent of the total green jobs, 13 percent of renewable energy jobs, and 11 percent of energy efficiency and green building jobs in California.

“Councilmember Alvarez has been a long-time leader on protecting our environment, but he also knows that we can grow our economy and protect our environment at the same time,” said Jay Powell, Steering Committee member of Run with the Sun, a clean energy advocacy program of the Sierra Club San Diego Chapter. “It’s not common knowledge that clean energy projects create more permanent jobs than fossil fuel energy projects – but David knows that and supports improving the green job climate in San Diego.”

Powell added that because of Alvarez’s commitment to renewable energy and other environmental issues, the Sierra Club, San Diego Chapter endorsed him for Mayor and they look forward to his continued work on boosting the local clean economy.

CleanTech San Diego, the region’s CleanTech industry association, recently released an economic impact analysis that showed the region’s six critical clean tech sectors: Algae Biofuels, Clean Transportation, Clean Energy Storage, Energy Efficiency, Smart Grid and Solar Energy Generation accounted for more than 4,600 direct jobs, more than 11,300 total indirect jobs and more than $2.4 billion of output to the San Diego regional economy. (www.sandiegobusiness.org/sites/default/files/cleantech.pdf)

The Walk the Walk tour included discussion about the San Diego Electrical Training Center, just a few doors down from IBEW Local 569’s headquarters. The training center is the start of many Local 569 members’ careers in the solar industry. Electricians from apprentice to journeyman participated in the tour and talked about their experience in the industry.

“The solar industry is advancing fast, but IBEW’s training programs help keep me up-to-date with skills to work on projects using the latest in photovoltaic technology,” said Kathleen Sax, a Journeyman Wireman with IBEW 569. “I’m making a good living while helping improve air quality with renewable energy.”

Sax is also trained in fiber-optics and has worked on solar projects around San Diego County.

As outlined in his Blueprint for San Diego’s Future, Alvarez outlines his priorities for the green economy both in his “Building a Sustainable City” and “Putting San Diegans Back to Work”.

“Getting unemployed and underemployed workers back into jobs is one of my biggest priorities,” concluded Alvarez. “Making renewable energy and energy efficiency projects easier and more affordable will support expansion of the clean tech sector in San Diego and create good paying green collar jobs.”

For more information, visit www.AlvarezforMayor.com     

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