Frequently Asked Questions

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  1. What is the Green Goods and Services Survey?
  2. Is the survey only for green companies?
  3. Is the survey mandatory?
  4. My company does not produce anything green but we recycle. Do we have green jobs?
  5. Does the BLS definition of green jobs consider criteria such as good wages, union membership, worker safety, benefits, or career ladders?
  6. Will the BLS collect data on the demographic characteristics of workers in green jobs?
  7. Is the trading of certificates and offsets included as a green service?
  8. Where is energy storage and distribution categorized, including the electric power grid and battery technologies?
  9. Why is the production of organic agricultural products included as a green good, but processing of these products is not included?
  10. Metals, glass, and paper pulp containing recycled content are identified as green goods. Why are products made from metals, glass, and pulp containing recycled content not included?
  11. Will BLS miss jobs related to green goods and services produced by firms classified in NAICS that are not on the industry list?
  12. Are self-employed workers included in the BLS count of green jobs?
  13. There does not seem to be a need to count support jobs, such as administrative staff, because their job duties are not affected directly by the green product or service and thus they do not require additional training. Why does the BLS count jobs in all occupations in the establishment in the green goods and services survey?
  14. Why is the distribution of green goods excluded from the BLS definition of green goods and services?

 

What is the Green Goods and Services Survey?

The Green Goods and Services (GGS) survey is based on a survey of approximately 120,000 business establishments throughout the United States. The primary statistics derived from the survey are annual estimates of employment in industries producing green goods or providing green services.

Is the survey only for green companies?

No, in order to get an accurate picture of the green economy, we need to hear from every company, even if your company is not involved in producing green goods or services.

Is the survey mandatory?

This Green Goods and Services Survey is not a mandatory survey, however your participation is critical to the developing of highly accurate data. This is the first nationwide green survey to be done and we are trying to collect the most accurate data possible. If your company is not a green company, we only need you to answer questions 1 – 4.

My company does not produce anything green but we recycle. Do we have green jobs?

Internal green practices, such as recycling programs and use of renewable energy to power your business, are NOT considered green jobs for the GGS survey. The GGS survey only looks at whether or not an establishment’s product or service is green. However, those jobs are counted as green jobs on the BLS Green Technologies and Practices Survey.

Does the BLS definition of green jobs consider criteria such as good wages, union membership, worker safety, benefits, or career ladders?

No. Using such criteria would require BLS to determine, for example, what level of worker safety is high enough for the job to be included as a green job. Making such determinations would be inappropriate for a statistical agency, which must refrain from policy advocacy to main its credibility among data users.

Will the BLS collect data on the demographic characteristics of workers in green jobs?

BLS does not plan to collect demographic data in this survey.

Is the trading of certificates and offsets included as a green service?

Yes, this activity is included. It is categorized in renewable energy or in pollution and greenhouse gas reduction and cleanup, depending on what is being traded.

Where is energy storage and distribution categorized, including the electric power grid and battery technologies?

Improving the efficiency of the electric power grid, including Smart Grid technologies, is included in the Green Goods and Services survey. Construction of power transmission facilities to connect new renewable energy sources to the grid is also included. Electric power distribution services are not included, consistent with the exclusion of distribution of other green goods and services.

Why is the production of organic agricultural products included as a green good, but processing of these products is not included?

BLS has excluded processed organic agricultural products because the processing has no direct benefit to the environment compared to processing any other food. The benefit to the environment of organic products occurs when they are grown.

Metals, glass, and paper pulp containing recycled content are identified as green goods. Why are products made from metals, glass, and pulp containing recycled content not included?

BLS has excluded the manufacture of intermediate and final goods from materials containing recycled inputs because these goods have no apparent benefit to the environment. The benefit to the environment of materials containing recycled inputs occurs when the materials are created, not when they are used in creation of other goods.

Will BLS miss jobs related to green goods and services produced by firms classified in NAICS that are not on the industry list?

Establishments are classified into NAICS industries based on the goods or services that account for the majority of their revenue. Establishments not classified into an industry on the BLS list will not be included in the green goods and services survey, if a minority of their revenue is from sale of green goods or services, these goods or services and the jobs related to them will not be identified.

Are self-employed workers included in the BLS count of green jobs?

No. This limitation is imposed by nature of the BLS business list that will be used as the sampling frame. The business list is the Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages that covers all business with employees covered by the UI or federal UI programs. The self-employed are not covered by these programs.

Why does the BLS count jobs in all occupations in the establishment in the green goods and services survey?

The BLS green jobs definition is not based on workers' skill sets, but instead on the environmental impact of the goods or services produced.

Why is the distribution of green goods excluded from the BLS definition of green goods and services?

BLS has concluded that transporting or selling a green good has no direct benefit to the environment compared to transporting or selling any other good.