Green City

Green Collar Jobs

By Jason Leach
Published April 21, 2008

If ever a piece in the Toronto Star could describe the situation facing Hamilton, it¹s this one.

Pointing out that while the old manufacturing sector is losing jobs, Tyler Hamilton notes that the energy production sector is poised to spend billions expanding the power system and hiring new skilled workers, as well as replacing thousands of retiring engineers, scientists, and tradespeople.

[C]learly, Ontario has jobs to offer – and high-paying ones. The challenge is to transfer and upgrade skills from one struggling sector so they can fill the growing labour vacuum in the other. It's unclear whether the government – or union boss Buzz Hargrove, for that matter – has figured out a way to connect A with B, or even recognizes that A and B should be connected.


It seems more time is being spent protecting the old jobs of dying industries that are struggling with change than preparing the workforce for the needs of a growing energy sector that's increasingly clean, green and primed for investment.

Dr Richard Gilbert was even kind enough to do the basic research for us in Hamilton. We just need for City Hall to get off their duffs and for the reactionary old guard to recognize the future or get out of the way.

Jason Leach was born and raised in the Hammer and currently lives downtown with his wife and children. You can follow him on twitter.


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By jason (registered) | Posted April 21, 2008 at 10:19:56

speaking of the old guard, here's a prime example in today's Spec opinion pages:

Funny how the story always changes - Red Hill was supposed to get trucks off city street. I guess not. Yes, trucks are critical to the economy. That's why we've just spent billions so they can access BOTH ways of the 403 by taking the 3-5 minute trip down Burlington Street to the QEW, and soon, the southbound Red Hill to the Linc. There's no reason for a truck at Burlington and Sherman to be coming through the core anymore. The old guard has had their day and has the results of the past 30 years to show for their work. Thankfully Hamiltonians are waking up to the fact that actions speak louder than words. The state of our economy is all the proof we need. Kudos to the mayor's office for hiring some sharp 20 and 30-somethings with a 21st Century vision of cities. The Chamber of Commerce might want to step out of the 50's and do the same.

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By Undustrial (registered) - website | Posted April 21, 2008 at 11:36:53

Hamilton has twice the provincial average of expressways and arterial roads, not to mention a massive network of train tracks which run right by the harbour, another excellent (and green) means of shipping. If we're having problems attracting and keeping businesses, it's not because we lack transportation options.

It may, however, be because we've overspent our infrastructure money on certain transportation options. Especially certain high-capacity transportation options which service areas slated for residential development but lacking nearly completely in industrial developments (cough south mountain cough).

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