Green Businesses Are Job Creators
By growing strong and resilient companies, green businesses are creating some of the most fulfilling jobs available. Companies that have embraced sustainability have seen consistent and positive growth over the past decade, making more jobs all along the way. The renewable energy field has seen explosive growth in recent years as the country begins its shift toward alternative sources of energy. The Solar Foundation found “that solar industry employment has grown by 123% in the past six years, resulting in nearly 115,000 domestic living-wage jobs.” Green businesses include some of the most well regarded brands in retailing as well.
Whole Foods Market
Whole Foods Market consistently ranks among the Forbes 100 Best Places to Work list. The grocery chain, which focuses on natural and organic foods, stated out as a single store in Austin, Texas and has grown to over 430 stores with roughly 91,000 employees. Whole Foods was innovative in breaking out from the traditional health food store format and operating as a true grocery store.
Patagonia, an outdoor clothing and gear retailer, is a certified B Corp with a solid history of environmental leadership. Patagonia’s 2,000 or so employees enjoy a work/life balance nearly unheard of in traditional workplaces. “I know it sounds crazy, but every time I have made a decision that is best for the planet, I have made money.” – Yvon Chouinard, Patagonia founder.
First Green Bank
Ken LaRoe founded First Green Bank in 2009. While First Green Bank is a small company, it had become a leader in sustainability in the banking industry. Mr. LaRoe’s website explains that he was inspired to start the company after reading Let My People Go Surfing, by Yvon Chouinard of Patagonia. Under his leadership First Green Bank has been named as one of the best places to work in Central Florida by several organizations. The company incorporates sustainability at every level of operations including its buildings, and also has a Solar Loan Program to help homeowners install solar power in their homes.