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Clean economy driving job growth in Atlanta

Staff writer |
The metro Atlanta region is poised to become a global industry leader in clean technology in several industry sectors, according to a report released by the Metro Atlanta Chamber (MAC).

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The report, which includes the results of a new clean tech economy inventory for the region, reveals that metro Atlanta is home to 541 clean tech company facilities representing 30,605 jobs focused on clean technology.

The report also shows Atlanta has clean tech strengths in top industry categories for employment and job creation, including energy efficiency; recycling and solid waste; smart grid; services, and products/materials. Those sectors represent areas for strategic growth in the future, along with solar and water technologies.

Since 2010, the metro Atlanta region has recruited some 34 clean tech companies, creating more than 2,200 jobs. Top clean tech employers in the region include GE Energy Management, Acuity Brands Lighting, Hill-Phoenix, Rock-Tenn, TOTO USA, Exide Technologies, Pratt Industries, Novelis, Siemens, Ventyx, and Southern Company, the report indicates.

To better understand and communicate metro Atlanta's clean tech assets and strengths, MAC set out to create a comprehensive inventory of metro Atlanta's clean tech firms and identify the region's key clean tech strengths by industry sector.

The clean economy has become an engine for the country's emerging next economy, providing a robust cross section of job opportunities, including high-wage jobs in segments where innovation and advanced technologies are essential for success.

The region's strength as a clean tech hub has steadily grown. Atlanta represents the most diverse metropolitan area clean economy in the nation, according to a 2011 national report by the Brookings Institution and Battelle Technology Partnership Practice.

Atlanta has the 7th largest metro clean tech economy in the country, ranks No. 1 in its number of LEED certified buildings, and ranks 5th in the nation with the most Energy Star buildings. Georgia is a national leader in Nissan Leaf sales, driven by aggressive incentives for Alternative Fuel Vehicles adoption.

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