by Chris de Morsella, Green Economy Post Chris is the co-editor of The Green Executive Recruiter Directory. Follow Chris on Twitter @greeneconpost

Major Green Industries with a significant presence in the state are: wind, biomass, environmental, hydro.

The Pew Charitable Trusts “Clean Energy Economy Report“ found that in 2007 West Virginia reported 332 cleantech businesses that provided a total of 3,065 green jobs. Over the decade 1998-2007 employment in the West Virginia cleantech sector contracted by 4.1% compared with a 0.7% growth in overall employment for the state over the same period. Over the two year period (2006-2008) West Virginia saw around $6 million of venture capital invested in its cleantech sector.

Environmental Jobs in West Virginia

A new Ceres report finds that implementing two new air pollution rules proposed by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will create 1.5 million jobs over the next five years. The power sector will invest almost $200 billion total in capital improvements over the next five years. Among the states that will see the big job gains from this construction activity are Virginia. The Ceres report estimates that 35,000 new environmental remediation and pollution control jobs will be created in Virginia as a result of these environmental standards.

Renewable Energy Jobs in West Virginia

In 2009 West Virginia had 4 renewable energy companies and 439 people were directly or indirectly employed in renewable energy.

West Virginia is home to the second largest wind farm on the east coast. The 264 MW system is located in Grant County and was commissioned in September 2008.

West Virginia hosts two small hydroelectric facilities under 30 MW, which are located in the Guyandotte River and the Tygart River Valley.

According to the U.S. Hydropower Resource Assessment, West Virginia has an estimated 1,149 MW of undeveloped hydro potential at existing facilities (dams) in 37 identified sites located in four river basins. This represents a significant potential for developing renewable energy and providing green jobs in the state.

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