It may not be easy being green, but in this recession, it helps. A new report by Acre Resources has found that jobs in the environmental sector have grown by nearly 20 percent during the past year while other industries see a slow down. Not only are companies hiring for green workers and professionals who can help reduce their carbon footprint, banks are often more willing to lend for green sector initiatives.
Industries dependent on fuel fight back in Europe. Jesse Russell Reports:
Earlier this year the President said he didn’t think the United States would see an average fuel price of $4 per gallon. Well, that day has come and the spiking cost of oil isn’t only hit Americans hard, in Europe motorists are seeing prices nearly double what it is in the US. As a result, some 70,000 Spanish truckers on Monday formed a blockade along the border with France bringing traffic in and out of the country to a virtual stand still. Some Portuguese truckers on the western border of the country also participated. And in France, truckers began easing off the gas and slowing traffic in advance of a planned national strike next week. European countries post higher taxes on fuel costs and as a result truckers in Europe are paying on average the equivalent of $7.73 per gallon. As a result of the strike, late on Monday gas stations in northeastern began running out of fuel. According to Spanish news reports. many vehicles that attempted to cross the truckers blockade ended up with smashed windshields or slashed tires.
By Doug Cunningham
A labor-environmental coalition wants private drinking water wells in Deepwater, New jersey tested for possible Dupont chemical contamination. Dupont reported to the state of New Jersey that levels for the chemical used to make Teflon – PFOA – exceed the state’s “alert level” limits for groundwater in that area. The United Steelworkers union says 750 private drinking water wells may be contaminated by high levels of PFOA and should be tested.
By Doug Cunningham
The AFL-CIO says the U.S. economy is in freefall and is urging Congress to act with urgency to help working people hit the hardest by it. The AFL-CIO wants unemployment benefits extended immediately. With four dollar gas, millions of homes headed into foreclosure and high numbers of long-term unemployed the labor federation says it’s shameful that Congress has not yet extended unemployment benefits. More than one and a half million Americans are suffering long-term joblessness. Thirty-seven percent of unemployed workers are now exhausting their regular state unemployment benefits without finding new work.
Over the past few years, no matter how badly America’s workers suffered from a tanking economy, President Bush has had a standard response: The fundamentals of the economy are strong.
Now, as the nation is sucker-punched by a series of disastrous economic news—worsening unemployment, a million home foreclosures, unaffordable gas and food prices, stagnant wages—it’s long past time for such pat pronouncements.
Or is it?
What will it take to get Congress to wake up and act to extend unemployment insurance (UI) benefits to the millions of jobless workers who are running out of benefits before finding a new job?
Will it take a soaring unemployment rate? Got that. On Friday the nation’s jobless rate made its biggest one-month jump in more than 20 years.
Maybe it’ll take a pattern of disappearing jobs? Check. In May, for the fifth month in a row, the economy shed jobs—nearly 50,000 and more than 200,000 this year. Not only are there fewer and fewer jobs, there are more people—both the jobless and new entrants into the job market looking for work.
United Steelworkers reaches groundbreaking agreement with the world’s largest steel company and more news from the “Bargaining Digest Weekly.” The AFL-CIO Collective Bargaining Department delivers daily bargaining-related news and research resources to more than 900 subscribers. Union leaders can register for this service through our website, Bargaining@Work.
USW, ArcelorMittal: The United Steelworkers (USW) has reached a groundbreaking agreement with ArcelorMittal, the world’s largest steel company, to improve health and safety standards throughout the company. The global agreement covers ArcelorMittal workers represented by unions throughout the world. In addition, the agreement establishes universal minimum standards at every site the company operates.
AFSCME, Hahnemann University Hospital: About 1,300 workers at Hahnemann University Hospital in Philadelphia, represented by District 1199C of the National Union of Hospital and Healthcare Employees/AFSCME, ratified a four-year contract agreement that calls for a 16.8 percent increase in wages and benefits.
Yesterday was marked by a striking economic event: For the first time ever in this nation, the average price for a gallon of gas hit $4.
The price of fuel is driving up prices for other goods and services as well, putting a serious squeeze on working families at a time when wages are stagnant and unemployment is rising sharply. Gas prices are choking off the American dream.
Remember that $35 billion air fleet tanker contract—the one the U.S. Department of Defense gave to European-based firm EADS, which makes the Airbus, rather than to U.S.-based Boeing? Looks like 44,000 jobs and the expanded purchasing power those jobs would have created in more than 40 states aren’t the nation’s only losses in the Bush administration’s decision to award the contract to an overseas bidder.
A new report compiled by the International Federation of Professional and Technical Engineers (IFPTE) highlights the corrupt bid-awarding process involved and found the EADS fleet will cost taxpayers money and is likely less safe than the Boeing model. In fact, IFPTE, which represents 85,000 white-collar engineers and technical employees across the nation, found the Boeing model could save taxpayers $90 billion over the program’s lifetime.