Two cooling towers at the Three Mile Island nuclear power plant in Pennsylvania.

Electric Power Generation Employment Down 42 Percent 2001-2014

Employment in nuclear power was essentially flat—it rose during the period but settled at 47,413 in 2014, up by 5 percent from 45,312 in 2001.

U.S. employment in the electric power generation industry fell by 42 percent, from 278,387 to 160,802, from 2001 to 2014, in part because of energy efficiency improvements and growth in renewable sources such as wind and solar, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Oct. 15.

More than half of the job losses came in hydroelectric power generation—employment in that part of the industry fell from 69,346 in 2001 to 5,821 in 2014. Employment in fossil fuel power generation, which includes electricity from coal and natural gas power plants, fell by 54,756 from 2001 to 2014 (from 153,591 to 98,835), while employment in nuclear power was essentially flat—it rose during the period but settled at 47,413 in 2014, up by 5 percent from 45,312 in 2001.

The employment data came from the Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages program.

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