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Clean energy employs 2.5 million in US: Report

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Ethan Miller | Getty Images

The clean energy industry in the U.S. employs over 2.5 million people, according to new analysis released by Environmental Entrepreneurs (E2), a nonpartisan business group.

The findings in a report, "Clean Jobs America", show that the energy efficiency sector employs 1.9 million Americans, with other sectors such as solar and wind accounting for 299,000 and 77,000 workers respectively.

"In a short amount of time, clean energy has become a huge part of our workforce and our economy," Bob Keefe, executive director of E2, said in a statement.

The analysis is based on data from the Department of Energy and the Bureau of Labor Statistics, together with a "comprehensive survey" of thousands of businesses.


"America's clean energy jobs market is massive," Philip Jordan, vice president and principal at BW Research Partnership, said in a statement.

"It ranks right up there with some of the biggest industries in the country – including real estate, management, and agriculture," Jordan added. The BW Research Partnership conducted analysis for the report.

The figures from E2 represent a global shift. A 2015 report from the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) found that over 7.7 million people were employed by the renewable energy industry worldwide, up from 6.5 million the year before.

"Renewable energy continues to assert itself as a major global employer, generating strong economic and social benefits worldwide," Adnan Z. Amin, director general of IRENA, said at the time.

The appetite for renewables seems to be growing, despite the dramatic fall in the price of oil. A recent report from Clean Energy Canada found that global investments in clean energy hit $367 billion in 2015, beating expectations.