American Climate Corps Will Put Thousands of Young People to Work in Green Jobs

The initiative is modeled after a program that employed millions of Americans during the Great Depression.

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Young men test river water for pollution

The American Climate Corps will enlist thousands of young Americans for jobs in climate resilience, clean energy and conservation.

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The Biden administration on Wednesday unveiled the American Climate Corps, a public-service and workforce-training program intended to prepare young people for jobs in clean energy, climate resilience and environmental conservation.

More than 20,000 recruits are expected to be enrolled in the initiative's first year. They will be assigned to an array of projects, including managing forests, restoring coastal wetlands and implementing clean energy infrastructure.

"We're opening up pathways to good-paying careers, lifetimes of being involved in the work of making our communities more fair, more sustainable, more resilient," White House climate policy advisor Ali Zaidi said at a briefing on Tuesday, NPR reported.

The program is modeled after the Civilian Conservation Corps, a New Deal program that put millions of young men to work during the Great Depression, restoring public lands and building out national parks.

California, Colorado, Maine, Michigan and Washington already have state-level Climate Corps programs, with Arizona, Maryland, Minnesota, North Carolina and Utah announcing theirs on Wednesday. 

President Joe Biden first floated the idea of a federal-level program in his first week in office, issuing an executive order that called for a plan to "mobilize the next generation of conservation and resilience workers."

People interested in registering or learning more about the American Climate Corps can visit whitehouse.gov/climatecorps. A dedicated recruitment site will come in the following months, the White House said.