Three agencies representing the Tri-Valley area will participate in a private/public partnership to explore the workforce needs and economic opportunities in reducing the region’s carbon footprint.
According to a news release from the nonprofit Rising Sun Center for Opportunity, the Alameda County Workforce Development Board, Bay Area Regional Energy Network, and East Bay Community Energy will work with other industry, labor, and government agencies to “ensure equitable access to high-road jobs in the building decarbonization industry.”
“Climate investments like building decarbonization present an incredible opportunity for job creation and economic equity, particularly in the context of a recovery from COVID-19,” said Rising Sun CEO Julia Hatton, “but only if we start with job quality and with justice."
Other organizations joining the effort include the Construction Trades Workforce Initiative, Emerald Cities Collaborative, The Greenlining Institute, several builder groups, and the cities of San Francisco, Berkeley, and Oakland.
According to Rising Sun, most housing in the Bay Area uses natural gas for cooking, water heating, and space heating. Reducing residential carbon dioxide emissions will require new housing to be all electric new construction, as well as significant retrofitting of existing housing.
“The labor standards and policy levers that Rising Sun seeks to establish through this partnership will ensure that decarbonizing the Bay Area leads to quality, safe employment opportunities offering family-supporting wages, benefits, worker representation, and career advancement potential,” according to the news release.
The effort is being funded by California High Road Training Partnership and California Climate Investments program.