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New talent and green building expertise are needed in the construction industry.

Head “Back to School” with Green Building Training

September 7, 2023

Earlier this month, in a landmark decision, a judge ruled that young Montana residents have a right to a clean environment and that the state violated their constitutional rights by promoting fossil fuels. This decision will shape future climate change legislation nationwide. 

The Problems:

While this is a time for celebration, this is just another reminder of the incredible work that will be required of the up incoming generations to minimize greenhouse gas emissions and build communities that can withstand changing climate conditions. As we move toward decarbonization and resilience, our homes and buildings will need to be re-imagined to meet current and future needs. The construction sector sorely needs an influx of new professionals. 

The latest Construction Labor Market Report from the Home Builders Institute identified that the residential sector needs to gain approximately 723,000 new construction workers each year to meet demand. Over 80% of single-family builders reported a shortage of carpenters and other trades. The Wall Street Journal reports that one-fifth of construction workers are older than 55 years old and are often the most skilled workers on a job site. As older, higher-skilled workers retire or leave for other jobs, contractors are not able to quickly replace them with younger workers with the same skills.

The Needs:

The industry needs a legion of young professionals who are equipped with passion and expertise in green building, energy efficiency, renewable energy, and resilient construction techniques.

Beyond the importance of green building, a diversity of backgrounds and experiences is crucial to industry growth. Diverse perspectives lead to greater innovation and problem-solving, both of which are critical for the system transformations needed to address climate change. People are impacted differently by climate change, and a wide range of ideas and solutions will be needed to create positive change.

Advancing building codes are also demanding higher energy performance. Many local jurisdictions are incentivizing or requiring energy conservation and decarbonization to meet local sustainability goals. There are significant financing incentives available for green certified buildings, with growing opportunities for higher certification levels and wellness, resilience, and net zero energy labels.

The growing focus on ESG reporting among investors and lenders is leading many developers and owners to consider third-party green certifications that demonstrate their ESG commitments.

The Oppotrunity:

We’ve seen a surge in job opportunities with our NGBS Green Partners, including verification companies. Our NGBS Green Partners are challenged to find available professionals with construction experience and green building expertise. Few students leave school with applied knowledge of green building certifications, their requirements, and certification steps.

As academics head back into the classroom, now is an ideal time to recommit to professional development. Students and industry professionals can earn the NGBS Green PRO designation, which validates expertise in green design, construction, and building certification. Individuals who have successfully earned the NGBS Green PRO designation have demonstrated an advanced understanding of the NGBS and the NGBS Green certification program. This course is perfect for emerging professionals within the residential construction sector and offers important background for further training or work experience. Don’t take our word for it. Read our Q&A with professionals who have earned the Green PRO designation about how it benefited their work: Veronika Maynard-SimonNicolas Ream, and Kristyn Mott.

Students can access the training at a discounted price of $100 by using the following code: NGBSStudentEDU. Bulk pricing is available when NGBS Green PRO will be delivered as part of a student course. This fall, NGBS Green PRO will be incorporated into fall courses at Texas A&M’s Architecture School and Purdue University’s School of Construction Management Technology.

Green building design and construction knowledge and familiarity with certification options is critical to meet current industry demand and ensure that the workforce is prepared for the coming energy transition. We hope to see NGBS Green PROs flood the market.