Manufacturing Climate Solutions
Manufacturing Climate Solutions presents new research on technologies that can protect the climate by reducing CO2 emissions. In this ongoing series, we ask, “What are the U.S. job opportunities in clean tech?” Technologies analyzed so far include:
Public Transit Buses: Chapter 12Buses represent 25,000 to 33,000 domestic jobs, many overlapping with the heavy truck industry. U.S. firms are leading the development of hybrid, all-electric and other "green" buses--the future of the industry.
Wind Power: Chapter 11U.S. employment in wind power is estimated at 85,000 jobs and growing quickly, with opportunities to employ workers and capacity from other industries like automotive and aerospace.
Residential Re-Insulation: Chapter 10With 46 million underinsulated homes in the United States, an expanding re-insulation market could save energy and create U.S. jobs for contractors, insulation installers, distributors, manufacturers, and material suppliers. This report is part of the Manufacturing Climate Solutions series.Posted: August 6, 2009.
Hybrid Drivetrains for Medium- and Heavy-Duty Trucks: Chapter 9The United States is well positioned to take the lead in hybrid commercial trucks, a new, fast- growing market that promises future U.S. jobs in truck manufacturing, advanced energy storage, electronics, and software. This report is part of the Manufacturing Climate Solutions series.
Carbon Capture and Storage: Chapter 8Chapter 8 of the Manufacturing Climate Solutions report focuses on carbon dioxide capture and storage technologies. These technologies will allow the U.S. to continue using fossil fuel for power generation while also achieving national goals to reduce CO2 emissions. These billion dollar projects also present huge U.S.-based employment opportunities in fields ranging from R&D to manufacturing and construction.
Recycling Industrial Waste Energy: Chapter 7Many industrial processes discard exhaust heat, combustible gases, and other "waste" energy. These highly recoverable resources can be harnessed to generate electricity, thus saving energy costs, reducing CO2 emissions, creating new jobs, and protecting existing jobs by increasing productivity and competitiveness.
Heat Pump Water Heaters: Chapter 6Current residential heat pump water heater products are add-on units used in conjunction with conventional storage tanks and they are produced by a handful of very small U.S. companies. The recent introduction of ENERGY STAR water heater criteria appears to be incentivizing some larger appliance manufacturers to develop new heat pump water heater products that will be more widely available. If consumer interest in heat pump water heaters increases, the market would need to scale up significantly to meet greater demands, opening greater opportunities for U.S. component manufacturing in the value chain.
Super Soil Systems: Chapter 5Super Soil is not yet commercially available, but it is an example of a technology that could potentially be widely adopted. The adoption of this or similar technologies would involve manufacturing jobs producing large tanks. Additional manufacturing jobs would be needed to make the equipment, along with the associated requirements for steel, glass, concrete, and other materials, and construction jobs to build the facility. This new technology for treating hog waste could allow the United States to become a global market leader in a sector where, until now, no adequate alternative has been available.
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Concentrating Solar Power: Chapter 4Concentrating solar power (CSP) represents a clean, powerful, endless, and reliable source of energy with the capacity to entirely satisfy the present and future electricity needs in the U.S. The new market for concentrating solar power plants has potential to create numerous U.S. manufacturing and construction jobs as U.S. companies grow and foreign firms come to the United States.
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Auxiliary Power Units for Trucks: Chapter 3Integration of auxiliary power units into long-haul truck manufacturing in the near future will likely increase penetration rates dramatically, with a corresponding boost to manufacturing. Expanded production of APUs would create economic opportunity at all stages of the value chain by increasing purchases from material and component suppliers. Additional value chain opportunities will likely come when APU technology is integrated as a component in tractor manufacturing rather than being an aftermarket product.
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High-Performance Windows: Chapter 2High performance window technology is well developed, and widespread use of these more efficient windows is leading to demand for even better performance. The U.S. industry faces new, more stringent efficiency criteria that may spur manufacturers to retool production lines and further innovate. Over the course of criteria changes, jobs may have to develop more efficient products. The ability of companies to respond to criteria changes may determine which companies will benefit and which will struggle to compete.
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LED Lighting: Chapter 1Light-emitting diodes (LEDs) are a semiconductor technology whose application to general-purpose lighting is rapidly growing, with significant potential for energy savings. The market for general-purpose LED lighting is currently very small, but it is growing rapidly as the technology improves and costs go down. Leading U.S. manufacturers find it crucial to ensure high quality and to protect their innovations--two good reasons to keep the manufacturing close to home.
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We use a value chain lens to present the technology, break it down into its main materials and components, identify companies and their locations, and give examples of the associated jobs. We believe this series is a useful starting point to explore opportunities for U.S. job growth and technology leadership in the new, carbon-constrained global economy.
The Center on Globalization, Governance & Competitiveness prepared the 2008 report for five sponsors: Environmental Defense Fund, the Building and Construction Trades Department (AFL-CIO), Industrial Union Council (AFL-CIO), International Brotherhood of Boilermakers, and United Association of Plumbers and Pipefitters.
*The views expressed here are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of any of our sponsors or collaborators.