Energy production is the U.S. and in Colorado is currently undergoing a huge fundamental change. Market forces are accelerating the switch from coal-fired power plants to cheaper natural gas and increasingly competitive renewables. These market forces are also largely responsible for the decline in mining jobs on the Western Slope and the closure or conversion of hundreds of coal-fired power plants to natural gas.
We can’t deny that clean, safer, renewable energy sources like wind and solar are the energy sources of the future. We have already seen significant growth in these energy sources and we will continue to see job growth and expansion in clean energy industries as they become even more stable, reliable and affordable.
A bonus we can’t ignore is that clean energy sources also pose far less risk for on-the-job injury and death for workers than drilling or mining, and also pose far less risk to people who live near clean energy production sites, like solar and wind farms.
Clean, sustainable energy is the future of Colorado and as the switch from old-style energy sources progresses, we must re-train workers to fill a growing sector of clean-energy jobs.