Green Collar Job Info – What Does A Green Collar Worker Do
By: Tonya Barnett, (Author of FRESHCUTKY)
While most gardeners grow within their yards recreationally, many probably wish that working with plants was a full time job. In recent years, an emerging trend in “green jobs” has brought this notion to the forefront of the minds of many. Also known as the green collar job industry, available work relating to maintaining gardens and landscapes has grown exponentially. However, many green collars may not be as obvious. Exploring available green collar job info is a great way to help determine if this type of job is right for you.
What Are Green Collar Jobs?
Frequently, jobs are referred to by the type of work which is done. Green collar jobs refer to any job that is related to managing, maintaining, preserving, and/or improving the environment. Alas, a green thumb is not the only requirement to find work within this field. As our focus on sustaining a healthy planet continues to grow, so too, do the opportunities within the green collar job industry. Many green collar job options relate directly to the impact which we have on the planet through energy production, waste management, and construction.
What Does a Green Collar Worker Do?
Green collar job info will vary from one source to another. Labor intensive jobs such as landscaping, lawn mowing, and tree trimming all fall within the realm of green jobs. These jobs are ideal for those who enjoy working outdoors and who appreciate the rewards of careers which require physical strength.
Other green collar jobs may be found on farms and ranches. These jobs are especially beneficial, as they create more job opportunities in rural regions. Work in greenhouses or growing fruits and vegetables are just a few examples of rewarding jobs within the green collar industry that may be well suited to those who desire to learn more about plants and sustainability.
Green collar jobs also include those which require more education and specified training. Popular jobs within the industry include ecologists, environmental engineers, and researchers. Those holding these positions are often active within the field, which includes the performance of various tests as well as the implementation of strategic plans in which the overall health of green spaces may be maintained.
Many careers which do not have direct ties to the outdoors may also be considered to be green collar jobs. Eco-friendly construction companies, those who process waste, as well as anyone who helps to maintain the quality of our natural resources all have a vested interest in the environment. There is no doubt that green jobs play a vitally important role in our lives.
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According to the International Ecotourism Society, Ecotourism can be defined as, “responsible travel to natural areas that conserves the environment and sustains the well-being of local people.”
Most ecotourism experiences are aimed at helping people to foster an appreciation of the environment, the conservation of wildlife, plants and resources, and respect and understanding of native peoples.
The field is socially important because it provides a way for people to travel responsibly, and to learn about and respect the environment of these natural places. Ideally, Ecotourism professionals organize and execute an experience for travelers that demonstrates local environmental sustainability and cultural sensitivity.
According to Ecotourism.org, ecotourism adheres to the following:
- Minimize impact.
- Build environmental and cultural awareness and respect.
- Provide positive experiences for both visitors and hosts.
- Provide direct financial benefits for conservation.
- Provide financial benefits and empowerment for local people.
- Raise sensitivity to host countries’ political, environmental, and social climate.
At the university level, ecotourism programs are usually found in environmental science and recreation management departments. Students learn about different aspects of tourism, such as hospitality and business, as well as scientific areas, such as conservation, natural resources, environmental history. And in more advanced programs, students will focus on nature-based education, such as environmental issues and ecological business. It is also helpful, and sometimes required, to be fluent in a foreign language. Also, check out online career training options that may be available.
Ecotourism related courses (Environmentalprograms.net):
- Group Dynamics for Ecotourism
- Green Event Planning
- Risk Management and Legal Liability
- Natural Resource Assessment and Planning
- Intercultural Communications
- Wilderness & Remote First Aid
- Environmental Education
- Outdoor Skills and Low-Impact Techniques
- Tourism Marketing
- Natural Resource Policy and Administration
- Forests, Conservation and People
- Cultural Anthropology
- International Forestry
Learn more about tour guide jobs in JobMonkey’s Land Tours section.
Major Ecotourism University Programs
- Clemson University, Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism Management
- Colorado State University, Department of Natural Resource Recreation and Tourism
- Humboldt State University, Institute for Ecological Tourism
- Kansas State University, Department of Horticulture, Forestry and Recreation Resources
- Texas A & M University, Department of Recreation, Park and Tourism Sciences
- North Carolina State University, Department of Parks, Recreation & Tourism
- University of Florida, School of Forest Resources & Conservation
As the threat to our planet looms over each society, its inhabitants are becoming more interested in the natural world around them and in ways to conserve and protect the environment. Ecotourism is growing at three times the rate of the tourism sector itself, and demanding more knowledgeable workers committed to sustainability (TIES).
Jobs in Ecotourism can be high-risk and adventurous, but also limited by season or temporary. Green travel employees generally work for private companies, government and public institutions, and nonprofits.
Salaries vary form field to field, but it helps to have a degree and some experience.
Group Leaders and Tour Guides
Group leaders and travel guides are responsible for guiding tours through the ecosystems of various destinations while pointing out the benefits of green travel and a green lifestyle. Leaders and guides come from a wide range of backgrounds. Many will have experience in the tourism industry, while some will be scientist looking for positions in education. A great benefit to being an ecotourism guide is the opportunity to see the world.
Individuals with a background in ecotourism can also become educators in the field. They can find educational positions in national and state parks, wilderness retreats, and as consultants in the ecotourism field. Besides the educational system, ecotuourism professionals can travel the world as lecturers, helping the local people in ecologically sensitive areas to set up their own ecotourism programs. These programs help to conserve natural resources, and can be an incentive for local people to protect their natural environment, rather than exploit it.
- The International Ecotourism Society (TIES)
- Green Hotels Association
- Lindblad Expeditions
- Environmental Programs
- Intrepid Travel
- Peregrine Adventures
Meet the author
A graduate of the University of California at Santa Barbara and the Santa Barbara College of Law, Michael Hoffman nurtured his love for research and writing while a practicing attorney in Los Angeles. Now a freelance journalist and aspiring screenwriter, Michael researches and writes on a variety of topics including environmental science, higher education, emerging technologies, health and, of course, law.
Bigger green shoots in white-collar job market
Among other major companies with optimistic hiring outlooks are Vedanta, PepsiCo, Deloitte and Philips.
Mumbai | New Delhi: White collar hiring is sharply up, both in established companies and startups, company data and a survey show.
Capgemini, Whirlpool, Tata Steel, Vedanta, Philips, Nestle, Deloitte, Livspace, PepsiCo and Myntra were among the companies that told ET that in past one month or so, the hiring level has either touched or is close to touching the pre-covid levels. The jobs being offered are across all levels, from top to entry-level.
And the news may be even better for startups, which have been particularly hit by the lockdown. The July-October period saw a sharp rise in hiring by internet companies, especially the bigger ones, unicorns and soonicorns, according to a survey of 80 startups by XPheno. These include Paytm, Byju’s, Delhivery, Udaan, PhonePe, Unacademy, BigBasket, Zomato Media, Vedantu, among others.
In fact, startups are emerging as major employers, with an annual headcount growth of more than 20%.
Highest Hiring Growth in Digital Content
In comparison, internet businesses saw annual hiring growth of 14% in 2019. Total jobs offered were at around 40,000 in the October 2019-October 2020 period.
The July-October hiring figures may be even better than what the survey shows since it excluded businesses—such as Flipkart, Amazon and Freshworks—that have overseas HQs or were acquired by foreign companies.
On the brick and mortar side, Capgemini hired 9,500 people in the first half of 2020 and plans to recruit 13,500 more in the second half. “We will reach our target defined earlier this year,” said Anil Kumar Singh, VP and head of talent acquisition-India, Capgemini.
Nestle said it is now hiring for all vacant roles across factories, branches and head office. “We are confident we will soon return to pre-pandemic volumes,” said Amit Narain, director, human resources, Nestlé India. Whirlpool and Tata Steel also said they are aiming to get to pre-Covid level hirings soon.
Among other major companies with optimistic hiring outlooks are Vedanta, PepsiCo, Deloitte and Philips.
The recruitment drive of startups shows their ability to withstand shocks. “Despite the lockdown scenario, Indian unicorns and soonicorns have generated employment and contributed to the jobs recovery,” said Kamal Karanth, co-founder, Xpheno.
Sectors that are driving the hiring include digital content and e-learning, fintech, consumer services, logistics, healthtech and on-demand services. Top functions include sales, business development, operations, IT, product management, marketing, finance and engineering.
The digital content and e-learning sector has added to the highest headcount growth (78%), primarily on the back of hiring by edtech unicorns and soonicorns such as Byju’s, Unacademy and Vedantu.
PhonePe’s chief people officer Manmeet Sandhu said: “We will expand our offline merchant network, currently at 13 million, to 25 million by end 2021 across rural and semi-urban areas. This will involve creation of 10,000 jobs.” She said 700 more vacancies will be filled this year.
Suhail Vadgaokar, HR director at Urban Company, said: “We've added 200+ people to our headcount and are looking to hire another 200-250 employees over the course of next one year.”
What is a Blue Collar Worker?
Rowe, along with a growing group of economists, claims in today's world, college may not make sense for everyone. A quick peek at the paychecks that go along with certain jobs indicates that for some individuals, short-term vocational and career training may be the smartest investment.
This article highlights 11 sometimes icky yet essential jobs that don't necessarily require a college degree, but yield Salary.com median salaries of at least $40,000 a year.
Median annual salary: $45,965
Bricklayers work with materials such as concrete, cinderblocks, tile, terra cotta, marble, and brick to build and maintain walls, buildings, industrial furnaces, and fireplaces.
The work is heavy, dusty, and very physical. But it's also ideal for those in good shape who enjoy variety in their work, have good manual dexterity, and possess a natural aptitude for math.
Bricklayers are high-school graduates and many complete apprenticeship programs with a local trade association or union.
2. Chemical Plant Operator
Median annual salary: $40,473
Chemical plant operators, who supervise the mostly-automated equipment that produces adhesives, paints, medicines, synthetics, and other chemicals, typically work in environments that are hot, loud, smelly and potentially toxic.
Fortunately, chemical plant operators rarely need a Silkwood Shower.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that chemical manufacturing plants have some of the lowest injury rates in the U.S. thanks to stringent and heavily monitored safety regulations.
On-the-job training is typically given to high school graduates.
3. Dental Hygienist
Median annual salary: $62,220
There's nothing pretty about getting up close and personal with other people's mouths.
Dental hygienists deal with dirty teeth, bad breath, and appallingly poor hygiene on a daily basis. On the other hand, they get to feel good about helping patients develop and maintain necessary oral health.
Although a bachelor's degree is not always necessary, most states require dental hygienists to earn an associate's degree, special licensure, or both.
Median annual salary: $46,072
Do you have a fear of heights? Then this job isn't for you.
One of the most demanding jobs on an oil rig crew, a derrickman works on a platform (called a "monkeyboard") attached to the mast of the oil rig, suspended about 85 feet above the floor of the rig. Attached by a safety harness, the derrickman leans out from the platform in order to manipulate the drilling pipe. When the derrickman isn't suspended high in the air, he's getting down and dirty conducting mud density tests.
The job is physically demanding, dirty, and dangerous. But the flip side is that it yields a decent pay and requires only on-the-job training.
5. Executive Housekeeper
Median annual salary: $44,459
We've all seen those television shows where someone shines an ultraviolet light around the room, exposing invisible stains we wish we didn't know were there.
Being an executive housekeeper isn't life-threatening, but cleaning up after strangers definitely falls into the "dirty jobs" category at times.
Fortunately, the nastiest tasks can be delegated to the housekeeping staff, allowing the executive housekeeper to focus on "big picture" items such as lining up clients and ensuring customer satisfaction.
Median annual salary: $44,597
You've seen them and you know who they are. But in case there's any doubt, firefighters are the ones running into a burning building while everyone else is running out.
In addition to the obvious duties of saving burning properties and the people inside them, firefighters are often called on to help people during other emergencies, such as car crashes, drownings, and even ice rescues.
The work of a firefighter is physically demanding, very dangerous, and stressful. Of course, there's nothing more rewarding than saving a life.
A high school diploma is required for this job, but some municipalities may require additional education and EMT training.
7. Locomotive Engineer
Median annual salary: $62,995
Most little kids dream of one day driving a choo-choo train. What they probably don't know, however, is how physically and mentally demanding the job is.
Locomotive engineers must not only know how to guide their trains along a variety of grades in all kinds of conditions, they are also responsible for the mechanical condition of their trains.
This hands-on, physical job is perfect for those who are strong, mechanically inclined, and love to travel.
Trade school courses and certifications are typically required.
8. Medical Laboratory Technician
Median annual salary: $41,737
If the sight of blood or other bodily fluids grosses you out, you might want to take a pass on this one.
Medical laboratory technicians perform a variety of tests on blood, skin, cells, and other human matter. Then they prepare the specimens for examination.
Generally, an MLT must have at least an associate's degree, and in some cases, a bachelor's degree.
This job does require the completion of an accredited MLT program, as well as obtaining a license and certification from an accredited program such as the Board of Registry of the American Society for Clinical Pathology.
9. Personal Trainer
Median annual salary: $53,056
We put this on the dirty jobs list because it involves other people's sweat and occasionally some. um. heavy lifting. You also have to work hard to keep yourself in shape at all times, and you spend most of your time hanging around a locker room at the gym.
However, there's a lot to be said for helping others adopt healthier habits. You might not get the praise and instant hero-worship of a firefighter, but if the Biggest Loser has taught us anything, it's that personal trainers can sometimes be the difference between life and an early grave.
Whether you're affiliated with a gym or working independently, some states require personal training certification.
10. Police Officer
Median annual salary: $50,089
Charged with the responsibility of preventing and solving crimes, police officers often find themselves in dangerous situations dealing with dangerous people.
Since criminals typically don't work 9 to 5, police officers work long, irregular hours in unpredictable and unique situations ranging from domestic disturbances to hostage situations.
This is an ideal job for those with a sense of adventure and a desire to see justice served.
Police officers typically have at least an associate's degree in criminal justice, but many cities and towns offer additional pay for advanced degrees. All officers must pass their academy training as well.
Median annual salary: $40,334
Plumbers have to unblock a lot of bath drains and toilets while hoping the thing causing the blockage is something more like a tennis ball instead of--well, you know. But all too often, it isn't.
Fortunately, plumbers also spend a good amount of time on "cleaner" endeavors, such as installing plumbing and water supply networks, ensuring clean drinking water and installing and fixing heating systems.
Some states require certification, an apprenticeship, or both.
Key Facts & Figures
Average annual wage at businesses receiving all revenue from green goods and services (BLS, 2011)
Jobs in the “clean” economy vs. the fossil fuel industry (Brookings, 2010)
New jobs that will be created by the recycling industry through 2030 (Tellus Institute report)
Our Best Practices section showcases exemplary organizations from across the country that are creating quality jobs or training opportunities in the green economy. One such group is Chicago’s Growing Home , a social enterprise that grows and sells organic food. Since 2002, the nonprofit has provided job training and transitional employment to over 250 Chicagoans with histories of incarceration, homelessness, or substance dependence.
Our Research Resources section highlights web-based resources focused on the green economy such as GreenBiz . With a mission to help businesses align environmental responsibility with business success, GreenBiz’s website posts links to current news stories, events, reports, papers, and similar resources focused on the green economy. It also has a section devoted to Green Career Resources, which features a range of information and tools for those seeking green collar jobs.
Our Articles and Publications section includes links to a diverse selection of articles, reports, papers, and books focused on the green economy such as Robert Constanza, Gar Alperovitz and Herman Daly, et. al’s Building a Sustainable and Desirable Economy-in-Society-in-Nature (2012). This report highlights why our current economic system is flawed, outlines the components of a desirable, sustainable economy, and describes key policies necessary to achieve sustainability, which include training for jobs in green industries.
Lastly, our Toolbox features resources designed to help on-the-ground practitioners working to create and promote a green economy. For instance, The Partnership for Working Families’ The Construction Careers Handbook: How to Build Coalitions and Win Arguments That Create Career Pathways for Low Income People and Lift Up Construction Industry Jobs is a manual to guide those working to ensure that jobs in construction are high quality opportunities accessible to all individuals. One chapter is focused exclusively on “Green Construction Careers” and includes several examples of success stories from communities across the country.