Sustainability Jobs Will Continue to Grow in 2024
As we leave 2023 behind, it's easy to become concerned about jobs in the sustainability field. Automakers Ford and GM have eased up on their EV roadmaps and the headlines about the situation seem more dire than the reality.
While some automakers are rethinking their EV strategies, others are moving full speed ahead on their transition to electric vehicles. Meanwhile, 2024 will be the year that charging stations funded by the National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (NEVI) program will start popping up nationwide. Yes, there have been road bumps along the way, but sustainability within the transportation sector isn't going away and those jobs, they'll continue to increase.
The Evolution of the EV AKA DON'T PANIC
Let's take a quick look at Ford and GM. These are the major players in the automotive space that have made headlines with their news that they would be pulling back on EV rollout. Both have had difficulty building EVs in the past few years and both have had issues with pricing.
GM has touted its Ulitum platform as the future of electrification. Unfortunately, difficulties building the vehicles based on that platform have led to a slow rollout of new vehicles like the Cadillac Lyriq.
Ford, on the other hand, built a spectacular electric pickup, the F-150 Lightning. But it seems the market isn't quite keen on an electric work or traditional personal truck. It could be the price increase of the pickup which initially started at around $40,000 and is now $57,090 for 2024.
Meanwhile, automakers Hyundai, Kia, and BMW are posting record-breaking EV sales numbers with no plans to slow their electric vehicle transformation. As for Tesla, the automaker will close out the year with 1.8 million EVs sold.
GM and Ford, are not reversing course on EVs, the companies are just adjusting their rollouts. Nearly all automakers are bringing more EVs to the market in 2024. The move to more sustainable transportation is a marathon not a sprint with plenty of new job opportunities along the way.
Charging is Coming
Range anxiety has morphed into charging anxiety. The goal of the NEVI program is to alleviate that concern. In 2024, charging stations should begin to appear that have taken advantage of NEVI funding. Even without government support, charging station companies will continue to expand their networks which will require installers and people to maintain the stations already in the field.
The NEVI program requires that charges have an uptime of 97 percent. That means more maintenance crews will be needed to keep these stations operational to reduce the frustration of drivers arriving at stations only to find some of them broken.
Throw in the addition of automakers and charging station companies transitioning to the NACS (North American Charging Standard) J3400, and 2024 is going to be a busy year in transportation sustainability.