Clean Energy Jobs Don’t Come Close to the High Paying Oil Jobs Lost

Clean Energy Jobs Don’t Come Close to the High Paying Oil Jobs Lost

March 11, 2021

This past year has been a turbulent one for the oil and gas industry. The coronavirus pandemic led to a drastic drop in oil demand with fewer people commuting and traveling, which rocked the industry that was already fragile from the Saudi Arabia-Russia oil price war last spring. Then following November’s presidential election, President Biden stepped into office with the most radical environmental agenda of any president before.

During his first days in office, he signed a series of executive orders that confirmed the oil and gas industry’s fears of what the next four years would mean for the industry. Among those orders, Biden suspended oil and gas permitting on federal lands and water, which accounts for 25% of the nation’s crude oil supply. He also cancelled the Keystone pipeline permit, immediately eliminated 10,000 American union jobs.

Forbes reports:

According to Texas Independent Producers & Royalty Owners Association, the U.S. oil and gas industry posted a net decline of 160,323 jobs due to lower demand in 2020. These jobs pay $133,601 on average, with 20% filled by women. 

Biden has continued to wreak havoc on the industry, displacing even more fossil fuel workers across the U.S. while promising clean energy jobs as “better” choices according to John Kerry, Biden’s Climate Czar.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that solar power technicians make $43,000 and wind turbine technicians earn $53,000 annually. In other words, these new “high-paying jobs” pay $60,000 to $70,000 less than their oil and gas counterparts. This is a significant wage gap to close by any standard.

These jobs are also a majority of the time short-term, and contract-based. Manufacturing solar panels could possibly provide more permanent jobs, but currently, the U.S. accounts for only 1% of all solar panel production jobs globally and China accounts for 73%, reported in a 2019 RTS Corporation Study.

The solar industry’s current service-oriented jobs can never fill the Biden administration’s promises for higher-paying, permanent employment, Forbes concluded.

We have warned time and time again that dismantling our domestic oil and gas industry to become 100% renewable will cost millions of high-paying American energy jobs and push our energy dependence overseas. The Biden administration continues to give the American people false promises while putting more people out of work, depleting energy-rich communities’ budgets, and putting our national security at risk.