Renew Missouri Co-Director
Missouri Coalition For The Environment
• Renewable Energy Growth: Solar, wind, and biomass industry projects are providing a substantial number of Missouri's green jobs.
• Get out in the field: Posting your resume is not going to cut it in Missouri. Volunteering with the local chapters of the Sierra Club or the League of Conservation voters on their Lobby Day is a good way to get face-to-face lobby experience.
• Networking: Green Drinks and St. Louis Green organize meet-ups that are very active locally.
"I've been impressed with the maturation of the environmental community in the last five years," says Missouri Environment Co-Director Erin Noble, "It's been fun to be in Missouri with all of the increased interest." Missouri Environment has been focusing on growing a green economy with legislative initiatives that have created a Renewable Portfolio Standard in Missouri that could attract 9,000 jobs to the state. St. Louis is starting to see growth as a result of these new environmental wins. In December, a Danish company announced plans to bring its wind turbine manufacturing business to the city, which will create an estimated 50 jobs.

Although the majority of environmental groups are located in the St. Louis area, recent environmental success has affected rural Missouri as well. Legislation last year paved the way for local municipalities to set up renewable energy standards. Wind farm developments in northwest and southwest Missouri are on the rise, and cities like Columbia are implementing plans to increase renewable energy usage that are attracting biomass projects. MFA Oil's switchgrass-fed biomass plant proposal would bring an estimated 900 jobs and $160 million annually to Missouri.

"We're no San Francisco or Washington D.C." says Erin, "But the good news is that environmental organizations are growing in size, capacity, and influence. When I started in 2005 there were three full time employees, and now there are 11." There are plenty of options for green-collar professionals looking for environmental work in the St. Louis area. "I'm currently pursuing a master's degree in environmental management," Erin suggests, "So, it can be good to work in the field while pursuing education." She adds that Missouri Environment has partnered with Washington University and Maryville University students pursuing law and environmental science degrees and that collaboration between academic institutions and environmental organizations is strong in Missouri.
Program Manager
The Open Space Council For The Saint Louis Region
• We've been looking for people that have strong marketing, social media, and grant writing skills. We want to see that they can tell the story and get the message out.
• Networking: The St. Louis Earth Day has a huge event in Forest Park that most every environmental organization attends.
• Universities with environmental programs: University of Missouri, Saint Louis, St. Louis Community College, and Maryville University. Environmental organizations that partner with academic institutions ofter will offer job leads.
"St. Louis has a robust environmental community," says Open Space Council Program Director Amy Butz, "It seems like there's a new non-profit popping up all of the time." Amy works on communications and volunteer coordination for Open Space Council events. She credits the Council's policy work around preserving the Meremac Watershed with playing a major role in passing a proposition that funds parks and recreation in St. Louis.

The Council's work on stewardship of streams, wildlands, and farms within an 100 mile radius of St. Louis provides local communities with recreational space, advocates for environmental stewardship, and offers environmental education for local youth and volunteers. Amy says the council partners with local hydrologists and geologists on projects that mitigate the effects of landfills, industrial pollution, and commercial and private developments in the Meremac Watershed.

While much of the staff have environmental degrees, volunteering is often the first step to finding an environmental job. Amy says there are plenty of environmental organizations in the area like the Open Space Council that can serve as a resource for emerging professionals looking to gain experience in the field.
Greensburgh Kansas City Government
• Green and environmental change requires passion. Before you decide on a green career make sure you have the passion and commitment.
• Sustainable green jobs will be driven by private industry and must be economically viable
• The Kansas community college system offers some innovative green energy programs. Cloud County Community College offers an Associate of Applied Science degree in Wind Energy Technology, the first in the state of Kansas.
In 2007, when one of the most destructive tornado's in US history destroyed 95 percent of Greensburg Kansas, the city was forced to rebuild. The city government committed itself to rebuilding as a "green" town. A resolution passed by the Greensburg City Council stated that all buildings would be built to the demanding LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Platinum standard. Greensburg was the first city to pass such a resolution.

As mayor of Greensburg, Bob Dixon, is one of the few municipal leaders that have taken on such a comprehensive green building challenge. Despite heading a city government, Mayor Dixon sees private industry as the engine of sustainable change.

Greensburg is located in an area that could see sustainable green job growth. Kansas is known for its wind energy potential. The city of Greensburg will be completely powered by wind energy when the local Greensburg Wind Farm is completed.
Business Manager
Solar Energy International
• Take classes at Solar Energy International. Workshops are offered in solar, thermal, green building, and even hydro technologies. Classes are offered in twelve locations around the US.
• Roofers can improve their skills by taking classes in solar energy installation.
• Solar energy installation and commercial size energy efficiency projects are the hottest areas of green technology.
Solar Energy International has been providing education in solar and other renewable energy technologies for 20 years. They have become one of the premiere institutions for accredited renewable energy workshops and offer classes in a number of locations.

Business manager Sandy Pickard highlighted the important work this non-profit does through their educational mission. Solar Energy International has expanded to include workshops in solar electric, solar thermal, micro-hydro, and wind energy. Classes are also offered online.
Communications Director
Center For A Sustainable Future
• Organic farms offer volunteer positions, and can be good places to learn renewable agriculture.
• Iowa State University has a great educational resource: The Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture at Iowa State is a great place to learn about the newest advances in sustainable agriculture.
• Another excellent resource, The Stone Barn Center, (north of Manhattan) is a non-profit education center and farm. They offer education for sustainable agriculture.
The Center for a Livable Future (CLF) at John's Hopkins university works in research, educational outreach, and community action targeted at "farming, eating, and living for our future." As Communication Manager for the CLF, Chris Stevens works daily in support of these goals.

Sustainable, or resilient, farming has recently gained exposure with the continued environmental and health problems associated with factory farming. In essence, much of sustainable farming is really a "return to traditional farming," Chris explained. In traditional, or sustainable, farming, animals are not raised in a factory environment in very confined spaces and large amounts of dangerous antibiotics and pesticides are avoided.
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