Electric vehicle charging station

An electric car charging station.

(The Center Square) – Employment data shows the clean energy industry is rebounding in Indiana from the COVID-19 recession and is expected to continue growing, according to two nonprofit organizations.

In a new analysis of employment data by E2 (Environmental Entrepreneurs) and Evergreen Climate Innovations, clean energy jobs grew 7% in 2021 in Indiana and now employs 86,215 people throughout the state. The sector’s growth rate is two times faster than the overall economy.

Indiana’s job growth in the clean energy sector is attributable advanced transportation – manufacturing of electric vehicles – which added 4,150 jobs in 2021 and employs 21,078 workers statewide.

More than 49,950 workers are employed in the energy efficiency sector in Indiana, followed by advanced transportation. Renewable energy companies employed 11,435. About 69% of the Indiana’s clean energy sector is comprised of small businesses employing fewer than 20 individuals.

“There has never been more stability and certainty in the market,” Micaela Preskill, the Midwest Advocate for E2, said during a briefing with reporters. “Clean energy companies know that they can – and should – set up shop and stay here in the U.S. as the industry is destined to grow.”

The Indiana data was part of the seventh annual Clean Jobs Midwest Report, an analysis of clean energy and transportation in 12 states. Clean energy jobs grew by 5.4% in 2021 in the Midwest and employs 714,000.

Preskill also highlighted the billions in federal funding from the Inflation Reduction Act coming to support clean energy. She emphasized coordination between state and federal agencies to create policies to remove barriers to clean energy development, such as workforce training programs and expansion of infrastructure for regional transmission grids.

“When clean energy jobs grow, our economy benefits,” Preskill said. “These are jobs that are available to everyone. Clean energy jobs cover such a wide swath of our economy—construction, manufacturing, innovation, investment, electricity, and automobiles. They cover every corner of our 12-state Midwest region and by investing in clean energy. We know we can create thousands of jobs across many occupations in every state in the coming years.”

Staff Reporter

Joe Mueller covers Missouri for The Center Square. After seven years of reporting for daily newspapers in Illinois and Missouri, he spent the next 30 years in public relations serving non-profit organizations and as a strategic communications consultant.