Why Seattle-King County?
Cluster Quick Facts
Data Sources: Washington State Employment Security Department, 2015; Washington State Department of Revenue, 2015
- As of 2010, Seattle had 31,340 clean tech jobs
- Seattle metropolitan area ranks 13th for the size of our clean economy among the 100 largest metro areas in the U.S.
- The fastest growing clean economy sectors in Seattle/King County are renewable energy, biofuels/biomass, smart grid, remediation, and public transit
- Seattle-based Alaska Airlines is one of the world’s first carriers to put biofuel into use on commercial flights. *Source: Brookings, Sizing the Clean Economy
- Seattle and King County residents are known for their love of the outdoors. But that’s not the only reason that this region is a leader in Clean Technology. With our abundance and variety of resources ranging from wind to sunshine to water, the King County area is a natural location for clean tech innovation.
Helping to lead the clean economy
The Northwest region is home to some of the country’s leading clean tech companies such as Imperium Renewables, Propel Biofuels, Powerit Solutions, and Infinia. These companies and hundreds more are part of a green revolution in the region that will propel positive change and new opportunities around the globe.
In addition to having a highly educated and literate population, Seattle and King County are home to an increasingly skilled and growing force of clean tech workers. In fact, just the Seattle metro area alone has seen clean tech employment far surpass the national average, and ranks in the top 20 in the U.S. As an area that actively supports green thinking, King County is poised to lead the world in clean technology.
The Seattle region has a rich history of entrepreneurship, is home to companies that create technologies that change the world, and has an unmatched culture of commitment to the environment. In fact, over 400 companies in Washington employing 16,000 people make our region one of the largest concentrations of environmental and alternative energy businesses in the nation. These are just some of the reasons the Seattle/King County area is an exceptional location for emerging Clean Technology companies involved in Clean Energy, Green Building, and Environmental Technologies.
In 2005 the Prosperity Partnership identified Clean Energy and Technology as one of several high-growth sectors of the regional economy. In 2006, the EDC founded its Clean Technology program, designed to provide assistance to entrepreneurs and start-up companies in the sector, as well as to provide counsel and technical advice to existing firms. the EDC was also one of the founding members of the Washington Clean Technology Alliance, a state-wide trade association. In 2008, the Clean Technology program was awarded the first “Excellence in Economic Development” award for clean technology and sustainability by the International Economic Development Council. Over the past five years, the EDC has provided assistance to more than 250 clean tech companies in King County, and in the process has helped to create more than 1,200 jobs and attracted millions of dollars in investment capital.
- CleanTech Alliance - The CleanTech Alliance was founded in 2007 by a partnership of McKinstry, Mithun, Prosperity Partnership, Puget Sound Energy, E3Energy Partners, Battelle—Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Washington’s Department of Commerce, the EDC, Port of Bremerton, Garvey Schubert Barer, and the City of Seattle. Its membership has since grown to include leaders in the field, including University of Washington, Washington State University, 3Tier Environmental, Stoel Rives, Grays Harbor Paper, Thomas James International, Jon Kroman Law Offices, Eco-Tec, EcoFAB, Greater Spokane, and others.
- Cascadia Region Green Building Council - The Cascadia Green Building Council is the leading resource for green building in the Puget Sound Region. One of the three original chapters of the national Green Building Council, the organization provides continuing education and networking opportunities to its members and industry professionals, and advocates for sustainable development in the region.
- Built Green - Built Green is a program of the Master Builders Association of King and Snohomish Counties that works to promote green building practices and educate both home owners and home builders on how to incorporate these practices into their construction projects.