NJ Employers Pledge To Support Green Workforce To Mirror State’s Leadership in Clean Energy Transition

Sep 21, 2022 10:55 AM ET
Press Release

September 21, 2022 /3BL Media/ - Several major businesses with operations in New Jersey today pledged to invest in building a diverse and well-paid workforce as they advance their work as sustainability and climate leaders.

Announced during a Climate Week NYC 2022 event on Wednesday where Gov. Phil Murphy also unveiled the Green Jobs for a Sustainable Future Report, the Corporate Green Workforce Development Pledge is designed to maximize well-paying green jobs in the state that benefit a diverse workforce. The pledge — signed by DSM, IKEA, Hackensack Meridian Health, Hugo Neu, Siemens, and Unilever — complements the state plan by demonstrating the robust corporate support for these goals and setting a standard for other state employers to follow.

“Public and private partners are stepping forward to commit to more sustainable business practices and the creation of well-paid jobs that support climate action and diversity in the green workforce,” the pledge reads. “Addressing climate change offers the opportunity for transformative investments that bolster the innovation ecosystem, protect the planet, and drive economic growth.”

"Companies, investors, and policymakers alike all know that confronting the climate crisis represents a major economic opportunity, and workers deserve to see these benefits," said Hugh Welsh, president and general counsel, DSM North America. "As DSM works to lead in the clean energy transition, we pledge to support the development of a diverse and skilled workforce to take on this monumental challenge and opportunity."

“The climate crisis marks a significant public health risk to New Jersey and its residents, and growing a strong workforce to address it is crucial to the health of communities across New Jersey," said Robert C. Garrett, CEO of Hackensack Meridian Health. "Healthcare can play a major role in addressing the climate crisis and Hackensack Meridian Health is proud to partner with the Murphy administration in putting workers at the center of our state's climate leadership.”

“With more than 2,000 employees across the state of New Jersey, Siemens is invested in improving the quality of life and advancing a more sustainable and equitable future for the communities in which we work and live,” said Matt Helgeson, head of sustainability for Siemens USA. “We’re supporting Governor Murphy and signing the New Jersey Business Leaders’ Green Workforce Development Pledge as we help our customers reach their sustainability goals and seek to achieve net-zero in our own operations by 2030.”

The pledge was organized by the sustainability nonprofit Ceres, in collaboration with the New Jersey Council on the Green Economy. In signing, the companies committed to:

  • Support high-quality, family-sustaining jobs for New Jersey residents;
  • Train, educate and build career pathways for a diverse, well-paid workforce;
  • Offer resources that support an inclusive workplace and contribute to the success of a diverse workforce;
  • Make investments that provide benefit to, and where possible are centered in, our local communities; and
  • Support New Jersey in meeting its aggressive climate, clean energy and other sustainability targets.

New Jersey has emerged as a leader in taking advantage of the opportunity to build a cleaner and more sustainable economy. Under Gov. Murphy, the state has approved landmark climate and environmental justice legislation while forming the New Jersey Council on the Green Economy to develop a holistic approach to harnessing these business and workforce development opportunities.

“The public and private sectors must work in tandem to proactively and aggressively confront the worsening climate crisis,” said Jane Cohen, executive director of the New Jersey Governor’s Office of Climate Action and the Green Economy. “New Jersey is proving that states can simultaneously boost environmental health and economic vitality by developing a green economy that generates good-paying jobs and opportunities for all in burgeoning new industries.”

The council’s newly released Roadmap highlights several recommendations for the cultivation of the green workforce, such as targeting job creation efforts in local areas and for underserved parts of the workforce, developing opportunities for existing energy workers, partnering with unions and education institutions, boosting clean manufacturing and supply chains, and more.

“Tackling climate change is an enormous challenge, but also a massive opportunity for states across the country to grow their economies and deliver rewarding, well-paying jobs to residents of all backgrounds,” said Alli Gold Roberts, senior director of state policy at Ceres, and a member of the New Jersey Council on the Green Economy. “As New Jersey doubles down on its efforts to capitalize on this opportunity, the Corporate Green Workforce Development Pledge showcases the already strong buy-in for these efforts among some of the state’s leading employers.”

About Ceres
Ceres is a nonprofit organization working with the most influential capital market leaders to solve the world’s greatest sustainability challenges. Through our powerful networks and global collaborations of investors, companies and nonprofits, we drive action and inspire equitable market-based and policy solutions throughout the economy to build a just and sustainable future. For more information, visit ceres.org and follow @CeresNews.

Media Contact: Helen Booth-Tobin