Columbus, OH - The Ohio Laborers’ District Council (OLDC) and its local affiliates, the International Union of Operating Engineers (IUOE) Local 18, and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Fourth District have together established a master working agreement for qualifying solar energy generation construction projects in the state of Ohio. The three building trades have built this labor agreement around their shared commitment to a just transition to renewable energy that creates meaningful family-supporting careers.
The new Statewide Solar Agreement's goal is to strengthen Ohio’s economy by securing good clean energy careers for local construction workers across the state. Ohio-domiciled workers who live, work, and raise their families in the state will benefit from the industry’s anticipated growth and thereby financially support Ohio’s local businesses and tax base.
According to the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), as of Q2 2022, there has been $1.4 billion total solar investment in the state, and Ohio is set to see the third-highest growth in solar Megawatt (MW) generation in the country in the coming years. Furthermore, there were approximately 7,411 solar industry jobs across the state in 2021 alone. As the solar industry continues to expand in Ohio, the Statewide Solar Agreement will play a crucial role in guiding sustainable development that results in cleaner, safer, and healthier communities.
Ralph Cole, Business Manager/Secretary Treasurer for the Ohio Laborers’ District Council, spoke on the Agreement's significance, “This is an unprecedented agreement and the first of its kind in Ohio. It is the most contractor friendly agreement I have ever negotiated in my 50+ years as a Union Laborer. It leaves no question as to who will be doing what work as jurisdiction is laid our clearly and concisely. The Three Trade Solar Agreement provides the incredible opportunity for hundreds of Ohioans to be on the forefront of working in renewable green energy while earning a living wage and simultaneously gaining health insurance and retirement benefits.”