The United States is undergoing an energy transition and the effects are being felt in US mining recruitment sectors. Globally it is predicted that the renewable energy sector will generate in excess of 10.3 million jobs in the next 8 years while fossil fuels sectors are expected to lose around 2.7 million jobs. As the mining sector struggles to find new staff, current workers are leaving the industry in favour of the clean energy sector.
There are several factors influencing this migration. Renewables and clean energy sectors offer a more diverse work environment. Companies recruit from a larger selection of professionals including scientists, engineers, and tech/IT. Clean energy is by its very nature an innovative space where entrepreneurs and young talent have the opportunity to cut their teeth and challenge themselves believing the work they perform positively impacts the transition to a sustainable future. There is also the concern that as the mining of fossil fuels is phased out, there will be limited career opportunities in future years. In reality the opposite is true. The success of energy transition is entirely dependent on the availability of critical minerals such as lithium, which still need to be mined. As these deposits are often not located in the same locations as previously mined minerals, new mines need to be opened to facilitate the production. New mines mean new jobs for the community and new opportunities for mining professionals.
The energy transition is going to require additional mining operations, not less. United States mining recruitment may currently have shifted its focus to clean tech, but clean tech cannot proceed without the mining of critical minerals. As an added incentive, energy security concerns dictate that these critical minerals need to be mined locally in the US or as close to the US as possible.
This fact is lost on many well-meaning environmentalists who perceive all mining to be a dirty and destructive industry. The University of London has gone so far as to ban all mining graduate recruitment, placing the mining companies at a severe disadvantage in terms of recruitment. The University of London has noted that mining companies do not comply with their ‘Ethical Careers Policy’. One does have to question where the lithium required to power their electric vehicles will be sourced, not to mention the copper required to power wind turbines and many other critical minerals needed in the energy transition.
As student enrolment rates in mining engineering courses in North America drop, opportunities for those who chose to see past the media hype abound. US mining jobs in critical mineral mining are set to increase as these new mining projects are approved and gain traction in the sector.
GateSource HR is a specialist executive recruitment agency with extensive experience in the mining sector, both locally and internationally. To discuss your US Mining Recruitment needs please contact us here.