One of the most powerful ingredients to green job creation is what the state and national governments are doing and have done. Unemployment has hit one state particularly hard.
For a long time Michigan has been well aware of the large number of jobs lost as the auto manufacturing business shrank. In 2005 Governor Granholm started the $2 billion 21st Century Jobs Fund as a way to switch from the fossil fuel economy to the clean energy economy. The goal of this ten year plan was to assist 1,500 firms, both new and existing, to transfer to the high tech economy. In 2008 Michigan passed the renewable energy portfolio standard that required utilities in the state to get 10% of their power from renewable sources by 2015.
The results of these and other coordinated policies is the expected creation of 150,000 jobs over the next ten years from a total investment of $14 billion in projects. The clean tech industries that are expected to create the jobs include: battery and energy storage companies, (including batteries for electric vehicles) solar, wind and biofuel companies.
By paying close attention the tax credits, stimulus grants, renewable energy portfolio standards and other legislative markers, you are better able to assess the direction and vitality of clean/green/sustainable companies in your area.