Does Wind Power Create Good Paying Jobs?

The renewable energy sector is growing rapidly as countries seek to transition away from fossil fuels and reduce carbon emissions. One of the key renewable sources being utilized is wind power. With large wind farms sprouting up across the country, an important consideration is whether or not these projects are creating quality jobs that provide good wages and benefits.

In examining the employment opportunities generated by the wind industry, research shows that wind power does create good paying jobs compared to other energy sectors. Jobs in wind turbine manufacturing, construction, operations, maintenance, and other supporting roles provide competitive salaries along with job stability and growth potential.

Wind Turbine Technicians

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, wind turbine technicians are projected to be the fastest growing occupation in the United States through 2031, with an expected 68% growth in employment opportunities. This is largely driven by the increasing demand for renewable energy sources like wind power.

Wind turbine technicians are responsible for installing, maintaining and repairing wind turbines. Their median annual wage was $57,320 in 2022. The top 25% earn over $63,900 per year. There are several paths to becoming a wind turbine technician, including vocational training programs, certification courses, apprenticeships and on-the-job training.

The work involves skills like mechanical aptitude, physical fitness, working at heights, and troubleshooting electrical and mechanical systems. The high job growth is attributed to the rising number of wind farms across the country as more states adopt renewable energy portfolio standards. Texas, Oklahoma, Iowa, California, Kansas and Illinois currently employ the most wind turbine technicians.

According to,, wind turbine technician is one of the most promising entry-level careers in the wind energy industry due to excellent job prospects and competitive salaries.

Wind Project Construction

The construction of wind farms creates many temporary jobs, especially for skilled tradespeople. Large wind projects can require hundreds of construction workers over several months to build access roads, pour foundations, and erect the wind turbines (Indeed). There are openings for equipment operators, ironworkers, electricians, and general laborers to work on wind farm construction crews (Indeed). The number of construction jobs fluctuates depending on how many wind projects are under development each year. In 2016, over 25,000 construction jobs were created building wind farms in the U.S. (DOE). While construction jobs are temporary, building wind projects creates economic opportunity, especially in rural areas.

Wind Turbine Manufacturing

Manufacturing wind turbine components and full turbine assemblies provides a significant number of jobs in the wind energy sector. Major wind turbine parts like blades, towers, nacelles, and generators require advanced manufacturing techniques and skilled labor. According to ZipRecruiter, wind turbine manufacturing jobs pay an average of $22-33 per hour.

Some of the largest wind turbine manufacturers in the U.S. include GE Renewable Energy, Vestas, and Siemens Gamesa. Their factories employ thousands of workers to build turbine components. For example, GE’s wind turbine manufacturing plant in Pensacola, Florida has over 130 employees.1 Vestas operates multiple production facilities in Colorado employing over 3,400 people to manufacture blades, nacelles, towers, and other components.2

Wind turbine manufacturing creates jobs for welders, machinists, engineers, electricians, and assembly workers. The complex components require skilled technicians and strict quality control. Employees in wind turbine factories can earn competitive wages and benefits while working to manufacture clean energy technology.

Operations and Maintenance

Operating and maintaining an offshore wind farm requires skilled technicians and engineers to keep the turbines running smoothly for their full lifespan of 20-25 years (1,2). Around 35-200 full-time employees work year-round on offshore wind operations at each major wind farm, providing steady, long-term employment (3). Their responsibilities include monitoring the turbines and diagnosing issues, performing routine inspections and preventative maintenance, handling repairs, and coordinating logistics to access offshore sites (4). The most common positions are wind turbine technicians, electrical technicians, engineers, data analysts, supply chain specialists, and vessel crew (5). These are high-skilled jobs that offer competitive salaries, benefits, and opportunities for career advancement in the growing offshore wind industry (6). Proper operations and maintenance keeps offshore turbines operating at peak efficiency, maximizing power generation and revenue over decades.







Supply Chain

The supply chain for wind energy is extensive and creates many indirect jobs. According to a recent report from, there are over 750 open positions related to supply chain management and procurement in the wind industry These include roles such as supply chain analysts, logistics coordinators, and production assistants.

wind energy supply chain jobs involve manufacturing components, transportation, logistics and other supporting roles.

The renewable energy supply chain also provides many full-time job opportunities. A search on showed over 250 open full-time positions in renewable energy supply chain The wind energy industry relies on suppliers for components like turbine blades, towers, gearboxes, generators, bearings, and more. This creates manufacturing, transportation, and other jobs up and down the supply chain.

Comparisons to Fossil Fuels

The median hourly wage for wind turbine technicians is $25.95, which is 34% higher than the median wage for coal mining jobs according to MEIC. Wind industry wages are also comparable to median wages in fossil fuel electricity generation. A 2021 Reuters article showed median hourly wages of $39.99 for nuclear jobs, $37.96 for natural gas jobs, and $30.33 for coal jobs, compared to $25.95 median hourly wage for wind jobs.

This indicates that wind energy jobs pay higher median wages than coal mining and are approaching parity with median wages in fossil fuel electricity generation sectors. The wind industry provides good-paying skilled jobs that can support families and communities.

Quality of Jobs

The wind power industry provides many full-time, skilled jobs with good benefits. Wind turbine technicians are in high demand as more turbines are installed, and they command some of the highest salaries in the industry. Other jobs like engineers, construction workers, maintenance technicians, and manufacturing positions also tend to be stable, well-compensated roles rather than short-term contract work. Most large-scale wind projects have high labor standards and provide full-time employees with health insurance, retirement plans, paid time off, and career advancement opportunities. The quality of renewable energy jobs compares favorably to fossil fuel industries in terms of workplace safety as well. Training programs at community colleges help develop the skilled workforce required to fill these good-paying clean energy jobs. Overall, wind power supports local economies by creating long-term, family-sustaining careers rather than just temporary jobs.

Job Growth Potential

The wind energy industry is projected to see strong job growth in the coming years as more wind capacity is added. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of wind turbine technicians is projected to grow 45% from 2022 to 2032, much faster than the average for all occupations.1 This will add around 10,000 new wind technician jobs per year. The growth is driven by greater emphasis on renewable energy sources and continuing installations of wind farms across the country and offshore.

The Department of Energy also forecasts robust growth, with average wind turbine size and hub heights increasing leading to economies of scale. With tax credits and other policies supporting wind expansion, total wind energy capacity is expected to grow substantially in the next decade. This will require a skilled workforce to manufacture, construct, operate, and maintain all of the new wind turbines and infrastructure.


After exploring various aspects of wind energy jobs, the evidence shows that wind power does create good paying, stable careers across multiple industries. Wind turbine technicians are in high demand as more turbines are installed, with the BLS projecting the field to grow by 57% through 2026. The median salary for wind techs is over $54,000 according to the DOE. Jobs in wind project construction provide well-paid skilled labor positions erecting turbines. Wind turbine manufacturing offers stable factory jobs building components. Wind farm operations and maintenance creates long-term technician and management roles. Even the supply chain benefits through increased business. Overall, wind energy careers provide competitive wages with good job security, across blue collar and white collar sectors. With the continuing expansion of wind power, these jobs will grow substantially in the years ahead.


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