Skip to content
A banner with the headline of the press release.

Governor Mills Announces Clean Energy Jobs in Maine Surpass 15,000, Contribute $2.3B to State’s Economy

May 8, 2024

An update from the State of Maine Office of Governor Janet T. Mills:

Independent analysis commissioned by the Governor’s Energy Office found Maine is more than halfway to Governor Mills’ goal of 30,000 clean energy workers in Maine by 2030, new funding now available to support the clean energy workforce

Governor Mills announced that the number of clean energy jobs in Maine has surpassed 15,000, increasing faster in Maine than any other New England state, and the clean energy sector grew to contribute $2.31 billion to Maine’s economy in 2022, according to an independent report released today by the Maine Governor’s Energy Office (GEO).

The report, authored by BW Research Partnership, was commissioned by GEO to analyze the clean energy economy and workforce in Maine. The report, available here (PDF), found that clean energy is offering resilient and diverse job opportunities in Maine that are poised for future investments and continued growth.

According to the report, Maine’s clean energy sector grew the fastest in New England and more than three times faster than the state’s overall economy between 2016 and 2022 and now employs more than 15,020 people, which exceeds pre-pandemic levels and puts Maine on a trajectory to achieve Governor Janet Mills’ goal of 30,000 clean energy workers in Maine by 2030.

“Maine is a national leader in clean energy and energy efficiency thanks to the ambitious climate and workforce investments made during my administration,” said Governor Janet Mills. “We are putting Maine people to work in rewarding, good-paying jobs that, in turn, are contributing billions to the state’s economy while helping to stabilize energy costs for households and businesses and reduce emissions that are harming our environment.”

“As we saw in the December and January storm events, Maine’s communities are especially vulnerable to the climate crisis so we must take steps to mitigate the effects now. Climate-smart federal investments are good for Maine and helps to expand our workforce,” said Senator King and Congresswoman Pingree. “We were proud to vote for American Rescue Plan–which funded the Governor’s Maine Jobs and Recovery Plan–and secure $2.75 million in Congressionally-Directed Spending to improve climate resiliency and renewable energy infrastructure in communities throughout the state. It’s truly a win-win for Maine–we are protecting ‘The Way Life Should Be’ and creating economic growth that will benefit the state for years to come.”

“Clean energy and energy efficiency initiatives in Maine are reducing our state’s reliance on global fossil fuel markets and strengthening Maine’s economy at the same time,” said Dan Burgess, Director of GEO. “As Maine continues to work toward 100 percent clean electricity by 2040, this positive trend is expected to continue, creating even more great opportunities to enter the clean energy workforce.”

“The high-wage, in-demand jobs within the growing clean energy sector are providing career pathway opportunities for many Mainers, including communities who are currently underrepresented in our workforce,” said Laura Fortman, Commissioner of the Maine Department of Labor. “We are looking forward to our continued partnerships with other agencies, employers, and labor unions to build the robust workforce needed to meet Maine’s climate goals.”

“The growth in clean energy jobs reflects the strength of this growing sector and the interest Maine workers have in being part of it,” said Heather Johnson, Commissioner of the Department of Economic and Community Development. “Clean energy is a sector where workers can grow and develop in their careers while contributing to Maine’s long-term environmental goals.”

“As clean energy grows in Maine, so does the number of family-sustaining jobs available across the State,” said Senator Mark Lawrence and Representative Paige Zeigler, co-chairs of the Maine Legislature’s Joint Standing Committee on Energy, Utilities and Technology. “Maine continues to invest in training programs that will ensure Maine’s workforce is ready to meet the needs of new and expanding businesses in the sector.”

“Maine is well-positioned to have continued job growth with a clean energy transition and we welcome this assessment of the energy efficiency, renewable energy, and energy entrepreneurs that are collectively moving Maine’s economy forward,” said Patrick Woodcock, President and CEO, Maine State Chamber of Commerce. “The Maine State Chamber of Commerce looks forward to continuing to build on Maine’s national leadership on heat pump installations and the pragmatic energy policies that will achieve economic prosperity and meet our climate requirements.”

The report analyzed employment across five key clean energy sectors, including energy efficiency, clean power generation, transportation, grid and storage, and clean fuels. Of those sectors, the fastest-growing was energy efficiency, which accounted for more than half of Maine’s clean energy workforce.

Supported by the governor’s Maine Jobs & Recovery Plan, the GEO launched a clean energy workforce and innovation initiative, the Clean Energy Partnership (CEP), to work with other state agencies, employers, schools and colleges, and workforce training organizations to expand job opportunities in the clean energy sector.

To make these job opportunities easier to find, GEO in coming weeks intends to launch a new online clearinghouse through the CEP that connects jobs-seekers with Maine-based clean energy employers and workforce training programs.

In addition, GEO is continuing to leverage Federal funds to expand workforce training programs that will ensure Maine people have the skills and resources to build careers in the clean energy field.

Using $2 million in Federal funds through congressionally directed spending secured by U.S. Senator Angus King and Representative Chellie Pingree, GEO is now seeking applications for clean energy and energy efficiency workforce development and training programs through a Request for Applications (RFA). The funds are intended to support programs such as clean energy job training, job placement services, stipends, equipment, curriculum, or other related services for Maine residents 16 years and older.

The full RFA can be accessed here (search for RFA # 202402047). The deadline to apply is May 24, 2024. More information is available on the GEO website.

The clean energy jobs report follows a report from GEO on the economic impact of Maine’s Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS), which establishes the minimum portion of electricity sold in Maine supplied by renewable sources.

That report found that Maine’s RPS has saved Maine ratepayers more than $21 million annually in net electricity costs by suppressing prices in the regional electricity market, while supporting more than $100 million in direct investment and approximately $900 million in operations and maintenance spending.

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.