I just came across this interview over on Treehugger. The Guardian recently pinned down three staff at Solarcentury in the UK and asked them 1) What are your qualifications? 2) What do you like about your job and 3) What does someone have to know to get a green job? (Honestly, I couldn’t understand half of what they had to say so I kept rewinding the video. Chattering Brits and Aussies standing on a rooftop while freezing their asses off as trains and traffic roll by don’t exactly make for easy listening.) However I did love the fact that they all had very diverse backgrounds, find the green biz actually exciting and, in their opinion, it doesn’t matter if you have a bizarre background (ahem, aid workers) because the green industry is so new and fresh that they need some pretty unique talent sets. In other words, this is the perfect career move for an aging field junkie.
I have been working for a green start-up called Project Frog for some time and the work is never boring. Working at the bleeding edge of any industry must always be exciting but I’ll have to say there is a certain energy to the work that approximates the energy we feel in the field when we first set down in a new country. It is an exciting time to be in any green business sector as my friend with a green energy investment firm knows. He remarked to me the other day that there is so much interest that he is literally losing sleep. Not a bad place to be in a downturn economy. And with President Elect Obama’s Green New Deal in the works it might be an even better place to be.
So, for all you aid workers that are either burnt out, newly married to your former co-worker or for those parents that are wondering what the hell your child is going to do after they return from six months in Lesotho – PLEASE DON’T WORRY! It seems that there is plenty of work out there and the water is fine. That degree in Philosophy will come in handy and the fact that you know how to wrap a shorted fuse in the foil from a cigarette pack so that the wipers on your Landcruiser will keep working until you drive the final two hours to your base through an Ethiopian downpour will almost certainly come in handy, somehow, somewhere in the solar energy biz. Hey, man, it’s just electricity.