Manufacturing in Massachusetts is dead, right? Rusted out and superseded by other, sexier industries.
Wrong, its still the fourth largest employer in the state (behind healthcare, retail and education). And its disproportionately important in places like the South Coast and the Merrimack Valley. Plus manufacturing wages are above the state median wage. Check out this 2008 manufacturing chartbook put out by the state.
What’s one of the key challenges facing the manufacturing industry? Its heavily reliant on energy as one of its major inputs (as opposed to other industries like financial services) and Massachusetts has one of the highest energy cost rates in the country.
So, a new solar power mandate that may add up to $250m per year to private sector energy costs is distinctly unwelcome. However well intentioned, its going to cost jobs.
And its going to cost good jobs at good wages in parts of the state that need them desperately.