Vermont Gov. Shumlin talks about renewable energy at Montpelier business

Gov. Peter Shumlin has released the "Vermont Clean Energy Industry Report," the first effort in the state to survey and describe Vermont's clean energy industry.

The report issued Monday said Vermont's clean energy industry employs over 15,000 workers at over 2,600 locations and has seen a 3.4 percent growth in the last year.

The Public Service Department's Clean Energy Development Fund commissioned BW Research Inc. to conduct a study of the clean energy cluster and issue the report.

One of the cornerstones of Shumlin's time as governor has been to find ways to reduce Vermont's dependence on traditional fossil fuels and encourage entrepreneurs to create jobs.

"This report confirms what I've believed for a long time - that the clean energy industry in Vermont is vibrant and vital to our economy, and presents a tremendous opportunity for good paying jobs for Vermonters, as we solve our energy challenges to get off of fossil fuels," Shumlin said. "This report also provides us with an important baseline from which to measure our progress and enable us to see how we're doing compared to other states. I'm pleased to see we're doing quite well."

Public Service Department Commissioner Christopher Recchia said developing more clean energy jobs and expanding markets for energy entrepreneurs "will serve us well in both improving our economy and helping us meet our goal of obtaining 90 percent of our energy from renewable sources by 2050."

Researchers made more than 10,000 telephone calls and sent over 1,200 emails to employers, yielding 1,464 survey responses with an overall combined margin of error for employment questions from plus or minus 2.25 to 3.89 percent. Data were collected between Feb. 24 and March 21.