Green construction market report
2/23/2012 10:31:00 AM by natedogg
In an economy where construction activity has experienced more ups and downs than an amusement park roller coaster, where the only thing “green” is the 10 year old adolescent latched in behind you - green building construction has maintained a steady market share of commercial building.
Showing upward growth trends in numerous sectors, green building accounts for more than one-third of all non-residential design and construction and is projected to grow to more than one-half of all construction activity within the next five years.
The U.S. Green Building Council projects by 2013, green buildings will support nearly 8 million workers spanning a broad range of occupations to include construction managers, carpenters, electricians, architects, cost estimators, and laborers. With green building blossoming, the demand for an increased need for a skilled and trained workforce is on the rise. Training will become a key component for getting and maintaining green jobs. Over 30 percent of the green workforce said they needed additional training when they started, and most report that formal education and training programs will continue to be needed as guidelines, requirements and technology continue to advance. Hiring firms agree; 71 percent of hiring decision makers maintain that being credentialed in green building practices increases workforce competitiveness.
According to the Pew Charitable Trust, the clean energy and green economy sector is the fastest growing job sector in the U.S. market place. By 2013, green building construction will add $554 billion in GDP. With the concept of green building in its infancy stage, it remains difficult to project jobs creation figures for the green construction sector as they vary by study, and depend upon the scope of the research.
However, despite any contradiction between numbers, the overall outcome is the same – green buildings are providing job opportunities at every professional level and skill set, and the number of jobs is only projected to increase.
Estimates establish that the green building market supports over a half million jobs in the United States, making up for nearly 30 percent of the design and construction workforce. This figure is limited to workers who dedicate more than 50 percent of their time to green projects or designing and installing green systems. Statistics exclude administrative professions, manufacturing, and/or transportation- services. As green practices continue to trend upward, with an increase in employment opportunity, the necessity to implement green building standards and best practices has been adopted by the architecture and engineering industry, construction professionals, and facilities management.
The LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environment Design) green building rating system has become the market standard for the integrated and sustainable design, construction, maintenance and operations of buildings, with nearly two million square feet certified to the LEED program each day.
LEED-based green building policies are being adopted on federal, state, and local government levels at a rapid pace. These policies include requirements for government owned and operated buildings to achieve levels of LEED certification, encouraging governments to lead by example. Market-based policy incentives for the private sector are transforming the marketplace by making green design and construction the new prime objective in design and building practices.
From recycling to design, construction and maintenance; green is not a trend – it’s the future. And it’s happening now. With a growing concern for the stability of our economy, job creation, the welfare of our environment and the capacity to reduce building operational costs, green is not only a way of building, it’s a means of putting money back in our pockets.