Jobs in the U.S. oil and coal industry fell in 2021 while employment expanded in the green energy sector, according to the latest data from the U.S. Department of Energy.
In 2021, the fuel sector employed 908,422 people, down 29,270 jobs from 2020. Within fuels, only biofuels registered a positive growth with 1,180 job additions. Petroleum lost 31,593 jobs while coal lost 7,125 jobs. Percentage-wise, job loss in coal was the biggest in the sector at 11.8 percent.
While employment in fuels fell, jobs in all other sectors covered by the report—electric power generation, transmission, distribution, storage, energy efficiency, and motor vehicles—increased.
In the electric power generation sector, solar jobs rose by 17,212, wind by 3,347, hydropower by 1,383, combined heat and power by 996, bioenergy by 349, and geothermal by 220 jobs. Employment in coal power generation declined by 572 jobs while nuclear power generation fell by 2,440 jobs.
Push For Green EnergyFollowing the COVID-19 pandemic, oil industry workers left the sector in droves. The Biden administration’s push for green energies has also not helped. Oil refineries have shut down, affecting America’s refining capacity. In 2020, there were 135 total refineries in the country. This has now fallen to 130, according to data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration.
During his election campaign, Biden had pledged to “end fossil fuel.” The Biden administration has canceled oil lease sales in Alaska and the Gulf of Mexico.
Though he is open to coming back to the energy sector, Davis is put off by insufficient compensation, remote locations, and arduous conditions of the industry.