Hawaii’s Green Jobs Future Is Right in the Heart of Honolulu
Last month Hawaii’s business, government and community leaders gathered along the waterfront of Kewalo Basin to celebrate the launch of Ho‘āhu, a capital campaign for the Kupu Green Job Training Center. Just a few years ago, that same property was the site of drugs, homelessness and crime. Now it is the site of great hope for Hawaii’s youth and its growing “green” economy.
The Kupu Green Job Training Center is a $2.75 million project to redevelop the existing Net Shed structure to create a “piko” or center of O`ahu with the first-of-its-kind facility for creating leadership in the growing green jobs sector, one of the fastest growing sectors of the Hawaii economy.
The State Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism has projected a 26 percent increase in 2012 in green jobs, compared to a mere one percent overall growth rate for other sectors. In addition to renewable energy and sustainability training, the center will also equip Kupu’s members in conservation and send young adults out statewide to assist with critical natural resource management issues. An example of this has been through its Hawaii Youth Conservation Corps programs that engage hundreds of young adults in paid summer through year-round service positions annually.