What are your thoughts on the state of the Environmental Job Market?
Email me at John@EnvironmentalCareer.com.
We want to hear how you are doing and what you are doing to make progress on your environmental, sustainability, or conservation career during COVID-19 times. What questions do you have?
COVID-19 has created the most challenging employment environment in our organization's 40-year history. We have experienced four major environmental career upsets since 1980:
- 1981 Start of Deregulation - Environmental laws and regulations are a major driver of environmental jobs. The 1980 elections swept in a deregulation mindset and less-than-ideal environmental policies. Drastic cuts to Federal environmental and conservation programs had trickle down effects to state and local environmental conservation agencies. Seasoned professionals might remember environmental and conservation funding roll-backs and staff cuts and hiring freezes by James Watt (Dept. of Interior) and Anne Gorsuch Buford (EPA) -the Supreme Court judge's mother). We started a national environmental careers newsletter that we began mailing (USPS) to universities and job seekers nationwide. The job market was so bad that we started listing medical jobs just because they were related to biology careers and they would help fill a pretty lean jobs newsletter.
- 2001 (9/11): The world stood still for period of time and many government environmental contracts were delayed as agencies regained their footing from the horrific terrorist attacks on U.S. soil. Environmental cleanup jobs increased for these specific sites but other employment seemed hit for the first few months after the attacks.
- 2008-2009 Financial Meltdown - The Wall Street crisis of 2008-2009 seems as though it should have had a dramatic effect on environmental employment, but we at the Environmental Career Center did not notice much of an affect to job postings at EnvironmentalCareer.com. The growing triple-bottomline sustainability focus in corporate America may have buffered some adverse effects to environmental sustainability employment.
- 2020- COVID-19. Here we are. Job recruitments are being rescinded. Hiring freezes are common. Unemployment nationally is near Depression-era levels. This is the most But there are areas of hope. Corporations and governments are still focused on sustainability, triple-bottomline, and climate change planning. It makes economic sense.
Please email your questions, concerns, and thoughts on how you can land a job that makes a difference, how we can recover lost jobs and how you think we can grow green jobs in environmental, sustainability, and conservation career fields. I will try to answer some of your questions during the online NAEP conference career session
on August 25. If not then (or you're reading this after the NAEP event), I'll try to answer some of your career questions personally or on this blog at EnvironmentalCareer.com.
Oh, and remember to VOTE
as early as legally possible. Your vote, my vote, all our votes just might make the difference for growing environmental sustainability employment and green jobs for years to come!
Director, Environmental Career Center