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Green Occupation:
17-2141.00 - Mechanical Engineers

Green occupations will likely change as a result of the green economy. Green economy activities and technologies are increasing the demand for occupations, shaping the work and worker requirements needed for occupational performance, or generating new and emerging occupations.

This is a Green Enhanced Skills occupation — green economy activities and technologies are likely to cause significant change to the work and worker requirements. New tasks, skills, knowledge, credentials may be needed. Employment demand remains the same, but there is potential for an increase.

Mechanical engineers work in the following green economy sectors:

  • Energy Efficiency — This sector covers activities related to increasing energy efficiency (broadly defined), making energy demand response more effective, constructing "smart grids," and other energy efficient activities.
  • Green Construction — This sector covers activities related to constructing new green buildings, retrofitting residential and commercial buildings, and installing other green construction technology.
  • Renewable Energy Generation — This sector covers activities related to developing and using energy sources such as solar, wind, geothermal, and biomass. This sector also includes traditional, non-renewable sources of energy undergoing significant green technological changes (e.g., oil, coal, gas, and nuclear).
  • Research, Design, and Consulting Services — This sector encompasses "indirect jobs" to the green economy which includes activities such as energy consulting or research and other related business services.
  • Transportation — This sector covers activities related to increasing efficiency and/or reducing environmental impact of various modes of transportation including trucking, mass transit, and freight rail.

They perform these tasks important to the green economy:

  • Apply engineering principles or practices to emerging fields, such as robotics, waste management, or biomedical engineering.
  • Calculate energy losses for buildings, using equipment such as computers, combustion analyzers, or pressure gauges.
  • Design integrated mechanical or alternative systems, such as mechanical cooling systems with natural ventilation systems, to improve energy efficiency.
  • Direct the installation, operation, maintenance, or repair of renewable energy equipment, such as heating, ventilating, and air conditioning (HVAC) or water systems.
  • Evaluate mechanical designs or prototypes for energy performance or environmental impact.
  • Recommend the use of utility or energy services that minimize carbon footprints.
  • Select or install combined heat units, power units, cogeneration equipment, or trigeneration equipment that reduces energy use or pollution.