St. Louis Region Green Economy Profile Is “Roadmap” For Region’s Green Industry Cluster
July 9, 2010
For more information, contact
Gary Broome at (314) 444-1171
For Immediate Release:
ST. LOUIS REGION GREEN ECONOMY PROFILE IS "ROADMAP" FOR REGION'S
GREEN INDUSTRY CLUSTER
St. Louis Core Green Economy Job Growth Matches That Of Silicon Valley
ST. LOUIS -- Ten years ago, few would have foreseen the importance that environmental issues would soon be playing in the future of metropolitan regions. Now, it is difficult to overstate the importance of these issues. In fact, at the St. Louis Regional Chamber and Growth Association's (RCGA) Chicago Leadership Trip in 2008, Chicago-based national economic development site selection executive Robert Hess described the issue of "sustainability" and "the green economy" as "business imperatives" as regions compete for jobs.
In this regard, as one of 4 National Pilots in the Rockefeller Brothers Fund-initiated Climate Prosperity Project, earlier this year the RCGA commissioned the St. Louis Region Green Economy Profile for the St. Louis Climate Prosperity Project, to identify the diversity, strengths and specialization of the region's core green economy. The mission of the St. Louis Climate Prosperity Project, along with parallel Pilots in Silicon Valley, Portland and Denver, is to create and sustain regional prosperity by cultivating green savings, green opportunities and green talent.
This Green Economy Profile is one of the initiatives of the St. Louis Climate Prosperity Project that also includes the RCGA's St. Louis Green Business Challenge and an upcoming Green Labor Market Information project with St. Louis area Workforce Investment Boards.
Among the key findings of this now completed Green Economy Profile is that St. Louis core green economy job growth is parallel to that of Silicon Valley (54% for St. Louis vs. 53% for Silicon Valley), and St. Louis has added 1,000 green jobs in the past two years, even during the national economic downturn.
Collaborative Economics, Inc. of Silicon Valley prepared this report. The consulting firm completed a 50-state analysis of the core green economy for the Pew Charitable Trusts and published by the National Governors' Association. The St. Louis and Silicon Valley Green Economy Profiles applied the same research methodology to the bi-state metropolitan St. Louis region and the Silicon Valley.
Among the other highlights from the St. Louis Region Green Economy Profile are:
Green economy jobs in the St. Louis region grew by 54%, compared to 4% for all jobs, between 1995 and 2008. The St. Louis region now has nearly 9,000 jobs in the core green economy. Although a small percentage of overall jobs, (0.6%), core green economy jobs represent an emerging strength for the region.
"The core green economy consists of products and services that provide alternatives to carbon-based energy sources, conserve the use of energy and natural resources, reduce pollution (including greenhouse gas emissions) and repurpose waste.
In addition, the St. Louis region has thousands of jobs in the "adaptive" green economy -- jobs located in businesses that are greening their products, processes and supply chains. Examples of these adaptive businesses include Boeing's use of biofuels in their aircraft, Emerson's Global Data Center's with state-of-the-art energy efficiency and renewable energy technology, and Enterprise Holding's installation of thousands of thin-film terminals at their retail locations. Future RCGA reports will measure the growth of these adaptive green economy jobs in the St. Louis region.
The core green economy jobs are spread across a diverse array of industry sectors, each with different rates of growth. 79% of the regional core green employment is concentrated in four industry sectors: recycling and waste, air and environment, water and wastewater, and energy efficiency.
The findings of the St. Louis Region Green Economy Profile will support the development of a regional "Greenprint", led by the RCGA. The Greenprint will serve as a collaborative, strategic plan to advance the St. Louis green economy.
St. Louis is one of 4 metropolitan regions selected as pilots for the Climate Prosperity Project, a national civic venture committed to linking environmental concerns with economic development opportunity and established last year by the Rockefeller Brothers Fund. St. Louis joined Denver, Portland and Silicon Valley as the first regions to adopt the Climate Prosperity Project.
About the St. Louis Regional Chamber & Growth Association (RCGA)
The RCGA is the chamber of commerce and economic development organization for the 16-county, bi-state region. The mission of the RCGA is to unite the region's business community, and to engage dynamic business and civic leadership to develop and sustain a world-class economy and community.