Labor, enviro coalition to GE: Build wind turbines in Schenectady

Environmental groups, community advocates, and manufacturing workers kick off major public awareness campaign calling on elected leaders and General Electric to bring needed economic investment and good green union jobs to the Capital Region
Thursday, September 2, 2021

Schenectady, NY - An environmental, community, and labor union coalition including workers at General Electric is launching a major public information advertising campaign today, calling on New York lawmakers and GE to choose a sustainable future by investing in green manufacturing jobs in Schenectady. The move would help solidify New York state as a global wind energy manufacturing powerhouse. The coalition includes environmental advocacy groups Blue Green Alliance, Climate Jobs New York, Greenpeace, Labor Network for Sustainability, and Sierra Club. These groups are joining to call on GE to invest in green manufacturing production in the U.S., and to shrink its supply chains, which currently sprawl across the globe.

The coalition is running billboards, print, digital, and television ad buys across upstate New York, Washington, DC, and Boston, MA, where GE is headquartered. The message is clear: New York’s future is at a crossroads. With the Biden Administration jumpstarting the development of offshore wind farms up and down the northeastern U.S. coastline, the demand for wind towers in the coming decades will only increase.

GE workers, the coalition is arguing, built the generators for the first electrical revolution and can be the foundation of a renewable renaissance in New York. After decades of eliminating good, middle-class union jobs in the state and accelerating our carbon footprint with global supply chains, GE can help revive New York’s economy by expanding its green manufacturing capacity and boosting the number of good union jobs. GE Schenectady is the cradle of power -- the “Electric City” that lit up the country. With Schenectady’s manufacturing history and ideal location along the domestic supply chain, the coalition is calling on elected leaders to craft policies that incentivize domestic production of wind turbines and equipment and an investment in a unionized workforce.

Through a major investment in wind turbine manufacturing technology, a sustainable future that secures New York’s infrastructure and revitalizes our struggling local economies is possible.

“New York lawmakers and General Electric have an unprecedented opportunity right now to bet big on New York workers, and step up to be the definitive leaders on green domestic manufacturing,” said Carl Kennebrew, President of IUE-CWA, the Industrial Division of the Communications Workers of America.

“By harnessing the power of wind, we can put laid-off manufacturing workers in our own communities back to work and build a green future that ends the dangerous impacts of outsourcing our essential infrastructure. New York is at a crossroads - and Schenectady workers are ready to get to work.”

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Green Jobs Green Economy is a coalition of business, labor, environmental, and social justice organizations that believe Green Jobs for a Green Economy is the route to a secure and sustainable future for ourselves, our children and future generations.

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