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Help wanted: Wind lacks skills

turbinePsst – fancy making a quick buck? Ditch the scratchcards, leave the armed robberies alone and get yourself into wind farms, for apparently there’s a lack of experienced technicians.It’s not exactly unexpected, what with demand for solar power expanding faster than bamboo going through a growth spurt but now the ‘help wanted’ signs are going up.Associated Press puts it like this:

But wind power officials see a much larger obstacle coming in the form of its own work force, a highly specialized group of technicians that combine working knowledge of mechanics, hydraulics, computers and meteorology with the willingness to climb 200 feet in the air in all kinds of weather.That work force isn’t keeping up with the future demand, partly because the industry is so new that the oldest independent training programs are less than five years old.[…]

Future need is harder to quantify, given the uncertainties of the industry’s growth. But with two-man teams generally responsible for seven to 10 turbines, the industry would need up to 800 technicians to serve the turbines expected to be installed this year alone. 


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