So I read this article and it made me want to scream. Instead, here was my reply:
Ok, yes, I get it: ARRA gave us this huge influx of cash and now the cash is gone so jobs are disappearing. But if you were under the impression ARRA was a long term solution you were kidding yourself. Everyone knew this would happen: boom followed by bust. No surprises here. The name of the funding was “Stimulus” after all.
Take ARRA and its funding surge for what it was: a shot in the arm. I don’t know about your training programs, but mine trained a lot of out of work construction workers in Building Science. Are those folks working in weatherization right now? Of course not! There is no industry or market but we knew that. All the money went to training workers - not educating the public to drive demand.
"But George, these are real people we are laying off!" I get it. Trust me, I get it. I worked as a job developer for the last 5 years. I get it. But we have got to look long term! These construction workers, for the most part, are now back in the field building. Yay! And guess what? A big chunk of them understand building science enough now to bring that knowledge to bear on their current projects.
Start thinking long term! If you are like me (around 40-ish years old) we have been raised in a world where we got immediate results. Well, folks we are creating an industry here. That doesn’t happen overnight. But I am in it for the long haul and recognize that I may not even live to see our CO2 ppm get below 350. And that’s ok! We are laying groundwork here we probably won’t even get to see pay off in our life times. Get over it. Move on. Get back to work building the green economy.
So what’s the next move? Now that we have a workforce (for the most part) let’s drive demand. Let’s get out there talking to folks about the benefits of energy efficiency. Educate the public on options, advocate for the best interests of the client and the market will get on its feet.
Don’t be so discouraged or discouraging. Accept where we are and move on. This is bigger than you, me or the folks who got laid off. It sucks. I know. But why are you in this business? If it’s to make a buck you’re in the wrong business. If it’s to maintain the inhabitability of our planet for our species then you’re in the right business. And this is a long play. I mean a multi-generational play. Accept that and life gets easier.
Now let’s get back to work.