MATURE THE MOVEMENT: LESSONS LEARNED FROM THE SOLAR INDUSTRY

LET’S BE ENGAGING
We as a “youth” movement have accomplished much. We have mobilized tens of thousands of individuals over the last several years to help educate communities,  enact positive local policy, and create lasting relationships with green organizations. This has aided in branding our message as a generation ready to create a clean energy economy. Our message has been clear and simple: create a strong energy policy that will use green jobs to replace fossil fuels with renewable energy through wind turbines, hydro-electric power and solar photovoltaic. However, government and industry continue to do business as usual producing energy via coal, oil and nuclear, making us only work harder and longer to off-set these enviornmentally damaging actions. Unfortunately, this has caused our philosophy to become merely a reactionary one.
THE PRICE OF YOUTH
No one expects much of us because not only are we new to this matured energy structure but also because we have yet to engage these industries in a manner that would allow today’s youth to obtain viable green jobs. As a movement, we claim to want these green jobs but lack the ability to actually create them.  The popular mind-set that policy is the silver bullet to achieve this only reinforces our reputation as a “youth” movement. Many see us as naive, incapable of creating real world change even at the most basic level.   Quite simply, we need to transition our movement and people into a competent and integrated workforce that has the necessary job skills to drive and sustain a green
workforce economy.

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