U.S. Labor Secretary Marty Walsh and U.S. Rep Cindy Axne (D-IA) joined local labor and environmental leaders this week at Plumbers and Steamfitters Local Union 33 Training Center in Des Moines for a tour of the facility and a roundtable discussion focused on growing Iowa’s clean energy economy with good jobs and strong labor standards.
The Biden administration estimates the Inflation Reduction Act is expected to expand the number of Iowans employed in clean energy jobs beyond the 30,393 workers reported in 2021. The act includes tax credits to create jobs in solar, wind, storage and other clean energy industries projected to bring an estimated $24.6 billion in investments in large-scale clean power generation and storage to Iowa by 2030. For the first time ever, these tax credits are coupled with strong labor standards to ensure they translate into good union jobs. Investments supported by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law will also grow good-paying union jobs in Iowa.
Local labor and environmental leaders led the Secretary and Congresswoman on a tour of Local 33’s training facility then followed up with a roundtable discussion. During the discussion, participants focused on how high labor standards in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and Inflation Reduction Act will result in good, union jobs for workers in Iowa and around the country and how the Department of Labor will help promote registered apprenticeship programs to build the workforce needed to meet the demand.
“We were so pleased and honored to have Sec. Walsh and Rep. Axne tour the facility and see how we’re training workers to rebuild our infrastructure to protect our families and the climate,” said Central Iowa Building and Construction Trades Council Executive Director Samantha Groark. “Workers in the building trades in Iowa are ready to move forward and make the investments in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and Inflation Reduction Act a reality.”
The BlueGreen Alliance’s Midwest Field Director Bree Halverson attended the event. “It was a great opportunity for Sec. Walsh and Rep. Axne to answer questions from union workers and environmental leaders in Iowa about how federal investments will make a difference in their lives,” said Halverson. “The bottom line is that these investments will create good union jobs here in Iowa and around the country.”