The clean energy industry in Louisiana saw growth in the third quarter, and that growth brought additional jobs.
The financial period saw the addition of 225 new jobs in the green energy sector, according to a recent Environmental Entrepreneurs (E2) report. All of these jobs came from recent biofuel refinery projects that have been cropping up in the state. The report placed Louisiana 8th in terms of job additions, based on numbers announced via press releases from companies throughout the nation.
All told, 18,000 jobs were added to the industry nationwide during the third quarter, with Nevada and New York topping the list with a combined 10,378 new jobs. The report noted that benefits were distributed almost equally among Republican and Democratic congressional districts, stating that “clean energy knows no political boundaries.”
However, after the election, many individuals fear for the future of green energy. Historically, conservatives—which now have a very strong Senate majority—do not favor green policies. In Louisiana, the individual who will serve as the Public Service Commissioner for the upcoming term remains undecided, pending a runoff election. Incumbent Eric Skrmetta, Forest Bradley-Wright, and Allen Leone—all Republicans—each failed to pull a majority vote on the November 4 election. Should Skrmetta be re-elected, some Louisianans have expressed concern for the future of solar energy development in the state. Skrmetta typically views clean energy development as too costly for companies and consumers alike.
If, however, Bradley-Wright earns the majority in the runoff, green energy policies in Louisiana will likely experience a renewal. Bradley-Wright recently switched camps, leaving the Democrats behind. However, he remains a powerful voice in the region on clean energy and received a heavy dose of campaign funding from the solar industry, according to a pre-election article from WWLTV.