Building the Green Economy

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Over the past few months, millions of U.S. workers have left or changed jobs. With such big shifts in the workforce, it’s an important time to consider which industries will have the greatest opportunities in the coming decades and the types of skills they will require. The number of clean energy jobs in the U.S. has grown since 2015, with approximately three million Americans currently working in energy efficiency, renewable energy, grid modernization, and clean vehicle manufacturing. Despite a downturn in 2020, the clean energy sector has great potential to continue expanding. That’s great news for job seekers, as the median hourly wage for clean energy jobs is 25 percent higher than the nationwide median hourly wage.

Yet the green economy includes much more than clean energy jobs. Urban farmers, upcyclers, green infrastructure installers and maintainers are all part of industries that improve livability and protect resources. The Sustainable DC 2.0 plan includes many actions to foster a thriving green economy right here in the District of Columbia. Whether in school, starting a new business, looking to integrate green practices for an existing business, or wanting to develop new skills, there are several programs to help District residents take advantage of the green economy’s benefits.

The Green Zone Environmental Program and Green Fellows Leadership and Development Program allow students and young adults to gain knowledge and experience about the energy and environmental fields. The Department of Small and Local Business Development has several green business initiatives, including the Sustainable Energy Infrastructure Capacity Building and Pipeline Program in partnership with the DC Sustainable Energy Utility (DCSEU) to build capacity on energy topics, and the Aspire to Entrepreneurship and Dream Grants that have been awarded to urban farmers and contractors reducing stormwater pollution. In addition, the Department of Energy and Environment (DOEE) and the Department of Employment Services launched Solar Works DC, a job training program run by GRID Alternatives Mid-Atlantic to equip District residents with skills to install solar panels for low-income households. Through programs such as these, residents gain the skills and support necessary to flourish in the growing local green economy.



Apply to join the Green Building Advisory Council as a Nonprofit Representative

The Green Building Advisory Council (GBAC) is a volunteer commission that makes recommendations on green building policies and monitors the District's compliance with green building requirements. Made up of representatives from the public, private, and nonprofit sectors, the GBAC continues to support the District as a leader in green building innovation. To view agendas for upcoming meetings and minutes from past meetings, visit the GBAC webpage. The next GBAC meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, December 1, 3:00–5:00 p.m. and is open to the public. The meeting agenda, including a link to join the virtual meeting, will be posted to the GBAC webpage at least 48 hours before the meeting.

The GBAC is seeking applicants who live or work in the District to fill two vacancies for nonprofit sector representatives. For more information or to apply, visit the Mayor’s Office of Talent and Appointments website.


Nourish DC Grants for Businesses Expanding Healthy Food Access

The Nourish DC Collaborative launched in October to provide flexible loans, technical assistance, and catalytic grants to emerging and existing food businesses in the District, with a preference for businesses located in or owned by residents of underserved neighborhoods. Nourish DC catalytic grant funding became available October 26 to support food businesses increasing access to healthy food and creating quality jobs. The grant application will continue through Tuesday, November 16. For more information on eligibility, to sign up for an information session, or to learn more about lending and technical assistance offerings, please visit the Nourish DC website.

Reducing Recreational Boat Sewage Discharge into District Waterways

DOEE is seeking entities through a Request for Partners to reduce sewage in the rivers of the District and the Chesapeake Bay by providing pump-out services to recreational boaters in the District. The amount available for the project is approximately $1,500,000 from the US Fish and Wildlife Service Clean Vessel Act program. The deadline for partnership application submissions is November 15, 2021. For more information, view the DOEE website.


Department of Energy and Environment – Green Fellows

The Green Fellows Leadership and Development Program is a competitive paid opportunity designed for students who are currently enrolled in a graduate study program. Candidates must either attend a local-area higher education institution or be a District resident. The Program is both a career exploration and pipeline program for students interested in job placement at DOEE. Green Fellows perform a variety of assignments designed specifically to enhance their public service values, environmental knowledge, critical leadership skills, and project management abilities. Fellows will have several opportunities to come together with their cohort to participate in cross-disciplinary and professional development trainings, collaborative group projects, field work, volunteerism, field trips, and other value-added opportunities. Fellows are connected to a program area which matches their unique skill set, background, expertise, and interests.

Inquiries may be sent to the Program Coordinator, Larissa Etwaroo-Bako, at Visit the DOEE website for updates.

Department of Energy and Environment – Program Analyst (Data Lead)

The Program Analyst (Data Lead) position is located in the Energy Administration, Policy and Compliance Division, Renewable Energy and Clean Transportation Branch. The incumbent of this position will work to support the development of solar energy and sign-up District residents to receive that energy for the Solar For All program by serving as the program’s coordinator for data management and systems engineering. They will draft materials and reports regarding the state of the Solar for All program’s information systems, conduct analysis of existing program activities to determine the most effective means of organizing program information, make policy recommendations, propose changes to the program’s customer interface, develop standard processes for subscriber processing and program analysis, and provide excellent customer service. Applications for this position are due by November 11. To learn more about the position or to apply, visit the DC Careers webpage and search for job ID 14786.

DC Sustainable Energy Utility – Communications and Content Strategist

The Communications and Content Strategist works directly with the Director of Marketing and Communications to develop and manage the DCSEU’s marketing content strategy to attract and engage internal and external stakeholders, customers, and influencers. The Communications and Content Strategist will use their strategic and creative skills to refine, enhance, and drive brand and program awareness, and promote the DCSEU through content they develop for earned, owned, and shared media channels. The Communications and Content Strategist will be based in DC and will support marketing and communication initiatives. For more information and to apply, visit the DCSEU website.

GRID Alternatives - Community Engagement Coordinator

The Community Engagement Coordinator will collaborate with the Community Engagement and Advancement Manager to create and implement an outreach strategy to increase the number of low-income clients served in targeted areas of DC, Maryland, Delaware, and Virginia. The Coordinator will assist in creating and maintaining partnerships with affordable housing developers, local government agencies, and community-based organizations in order to more effectively identify, encourage, and serve low-income clients For more information and to apply, visit the GRID Alternatives website.


Shepherd Parkway Community Clean-Up

Join Ward 8 Woods Conservancy on Saturday, November 13, from 10:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. to help restore Shepherd Parkway by removing trash and invasive vines that are smothering the trees. Shepherd Parkway is a federally-owned parkland corridor that covers the hillside between I-295 and the neighborhoods of Congress Heights and Bellevue in the far southern part of Washington, DC. Its 197 acres of eastern hardwood forest include the remains of two Civil War forts, two bald eagle nests, and views across the city. To register for the event, visit the Eventbrite page.

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Restoration Planting: Melvin Hazen East

Join Rock Creek Conservancy and National Park Service for a socially distant event to plant native herbaceous and woody species at Melvin Hazen East on Saturday, November 13, from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Native plants provide critical habitat and nutrient support for wildlife and humans. To register for the event, visit the Rock Creek Conservancy website.

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eCYCLE Collection Events

By recycling used electronics, individuals can help recover valuable resources and properly manage potentially hazardous materials. eCYCLE DC, through manufacturers’ collection and recycling plans, is bringing District residents more options for recycling their electronics.


The following items are banned from the trash and are collected at the eCYCLE DC collection events: computers and monitors, tablets, e-readers, mice, keyboards, DVD or VCR players, printers, televisions, game consoles, and portable music players. For more information, check out this fact sheet. Upcoming eCYCLE DC collection events are listed below.

  • Saturday, November 6, 10:00 a.m.–2:00 p.m. 1801 Hamlin St NE (near Woodridge Library)        
  • Saturday, November 6, 10:00 a.m.–2:00 p.m. 301 Franklin St NE (north of Edgewood Recreation Center)
  • Saturday, November 13, 10:00 a.m.–2:00 p.m. 301 D St SE (east of Folger Park) *Collection vehicle on corner of D St SE & 3rd St SE
  • Saturday, November 20, 10:00 a.m.–2:00 p.m. 416 Cedar St. NW (near Takoma Park Library)
  • Saturday, November 20, 10:00 a.m.–2:00 p.m. 15 61st St NE (west of Marvin Gaye Recreation Center)
  • Saturday, December 4, 10:00 a.m.–2:00 p.m. 100 Joliet Street, SW (near Bald Eagle Recreation Center)
  • Saturday, December 4, 10:00 a.m.–2:00 p.m. 3310 Connecticut Ave NW (near Cleveland Park Library)
  • Saturday, December 11, 10:00 a.m.–2:00 p.m. 3260 R St NW (near Georgetown Neighborhood Library) 
  • Saturday, December 18, 10:00 a.m.–2:00 p.m. 3160 16th St NW (near Mt. Pleasant library)


Please visit the eCYCLE DC website to check for any updates closer to the event date.

Resilience: Community Empowerment Series

The FH Faunteroy Community Enrichment Center (FCEC), located at 4800 Nannie Helen Burroughs Avenue NE in Ward 7, launched a monthly series on Thursdays for community members to engage, meet, and discuss resilience matters that impact them directly. The series is inspired by the work of the Ward 7 Resilience Hub Community Committee, in partnership with community leaders, DOEE, Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency, and other community-focused organizations. The second Thursday of the month features a presenter from DOEE on the topic of "Flooding and Climate Change for Renters and Homeowners." The sessions offer limited in-person seating and a virtual participation option, and they are live-streamed and recorded. For more information, visit the FCEC website.


Fix-It DC Information Session

Fix-It DC is returning! Do you have fixing skills or enjoy troubleshooting? Reconnect with the community and help create a culture of repair and reuse. Fix-It DC is currently recruiting volunteer coaches and coordinators for events in 2022. To learn more about getting involved with Fix-It DC, please attend the upcoming information session Thursday, November 18, 6:00–7:30 p.m. at Martin Luther King Jr Memorial Library, located at 901 G St NW, and tour the newly renovated Labs at DC Public Library! For more information, visit the Fix-It DC webpage.

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what we're reading

A Pilot Program at the Mount Pleasant Library Lets You Check Out Seeds: Launched in September 2021, the Mt. Pleasant Seed Library encourages District residents to grow their own food by letting them check out (and keep!) seeds. The initiative aims to address seed shortages and inspire greater participation in urban agriculture.

Chestnuts Used To Be A Staple Part Of The American Diet. Could They Be Again?: Chestnuts have an interesting history that intersects with the origins of Thanksgiving and likely even with the origins of the District. Learn why they are not as prominent as they used to be, their burgeoning comeback, and the environmental benefits they have.

Washington, DC’s Fight Against Hunger: Howard University journalism major Olivia Green shares a news report on the District’s initiatives to combat food insecurity, a long-standing challenge that was only exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

A Black Family's Land Was Taken For A D.C. Park. Now It Will Bear Their Name: This past summer, Lafayette-Pointer Recreation Center reopened after renovations and added “Pointer” to its name to honor the Black family whose land was taken to build an all-White school and the adjacent park. Explore the rich backstory of Captain George Pointer’s role in early American history and the campaign to honor him through the renaming.




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