Wind Sector Employment

Employment In the Wind Sector

By the end of the year 2010, about 670,000 persons were employed worldwide directly and indirectly in the various branches of the wind sector. Within five years, the number of jobs almost tripled, from 235 000 in 2005.There is an increasing demand for a very broad range of jobs, from engineers, skilled workers to mangers, financial, environmental and legal experts.

Wind Energy Employment Projections

The main driver of growth in wind energy employment is the growing need for electrical energy, and the projected shortfalls due to the fact that conventional electricity generation cannot keep up with demand. Wind energy can harness huge amounts of clean renewable energy which has lead to the 2030 and 20% wind energy initiatives. It is projected that the U.S. wind energy industry could support the following employment:

  • 150,000 workers directly employed by the wind energy industry
  • 100,000 jobs in associated industries (electrical manufacturing, steel fabrication, accounting, law)
  • 100,000 jobs in wind-generated electricity transmission and distribution
  • 125,000 jobs in "smart" energy applications in commercial and residential controls

Careers in wind energy

Developing a wind farm—groups of wind turbines used to produce electricity from wind power—is a challenging process and usually takes several years from inception to construction, and requires workers in many different occupations.

Professional occupations in the wind energy industry include engineers, scientists, and logisticians. Aerospace engineers, for example, design, test, and supervise the manufacture of turbine blades and rotors, and conduct aerodynamics assessments, while atmospheric scientists (or meteorologists) monitor the atmosphere around a potential project to ensure that there is adequate wind to produce electricity. Workers in construction occupations build and repair roads, buildings, and other structures. Construction occupations in the wind energy industry include laborers, electricians, and equipment operators.

By operating machines and other equipment, workers in production occupations assemble goods and distribute energy. Production occupations in the wind energy industry include machinists, machine tool operators, assemblers, and inspectors. Workers in transportation occupations move people and materials. Transportation occupations in the wind energy industry include truck drivers and crane operators.