Giving Compass' Take:

• Job growth in the clean energy sector came to a halt with the stay-home-orders for coronavirus and is now losing 15 percent of its workforce, according to researchers. 

•  The sector has already asked the government for more support for cleantech sectors in upcoming bills.  How can donors support the clean energy workforce if the government does not?

• Read more about how COVID-19 is impacting the cleantech sector. 

More than 106,000 clean energy jobs were eliminated in the month of March due to the novel coronavirus outbreak, according to an analysis of unemployment data by BW Research Partnership and E2. The layoffs reflect a 3% drop in overall industry employment.

The layoffs come as hundreds of clean energy-related manufacturing plants — for production of electric vehicles (EVs), building materials, solar/wind power infrastructure and more — have closed to prevent the spread of the virus. The states to see the largest drops in clean energy employment are Hawaii (6.4%), Pennsylvania (6.2%) and North Carolina (5.9%), while California lost the most clean energy jobs overall (19,949).

Researchers project the industry may lose up to 500,000 jobs, or 15% of its workforce, during the remainder of the pandemic if actions aren't taken to support clean energy.

These layoffs impact not only the well-being of employees and their families, but also the growth that the clean energy industry had seen over the last few years. In early 2020, before the coronavirus spread to the U.S., clean energy employment increased for the fifth straight year to employ more than 3.3 million workers nationwide (accounting for 40% of the entire U.S. energy workforce), according to E2.

Such growth is now threatened by stay-at-home orders, revenue losses and a general sense of uncertainty about the future of the U.S. economy. To curb this threat to clean energy, industry leaders are calling on Congress to extend deadlines on relevant projects that qualify for tax incentives; provide temporary refundability for renewable tax credits; and financially support cleantech sectors in upcoming stimulus bills.

Read the full article about clean energy industry losing its workforce by Kristin Musulin at Smart Cities Dive.