Initiatives: Green Collar Workers Strengthen Building Economy

Green construction is the brightest spot in the U.S. building industry. According to the U.S. Green Building Council, the green building industry is not as affected by the overall down market. Companies like ours, NCFI Polyurethanes, are doing their best to not just prepare for this major building trend, but to also make sure the building industry is prepared for it with current and complete technical information, high-touch support and the highest-quality, best-formulated products.

When the U.S. Department of Energy says about 80 percent of pre-1980 U.S. homes and a good percentage of current homes are under-insulated, and demand for new green building is exploding, there is certainly a swell of emergent opportunity — for manufacturers and for entrepreneurial craftsmen. Consumer demand for green building products and methods is growing; architects are specifying these products into buildings; and builders/contractors are installing them at an accelerated pace.

The only potential stumbling block we currently see in the green building juggernaut would be lack of qualified high-performance spray foam applicators. Now NCFI is addressing that potential concern too.

NCFI is tackling the future need for highly qualified building experts by recruiting, training and supporting top-quality insulation installers/applicators. A new website,, is designed to attract hard-working, dedicated people who want to take control of their own destiny by tying it to the burgeoning green jobs economy.

For people considering a career change, or who are out of work from layoffs and closings, the green building industry can be an ideal choice. As homeowners demand green, sustainable products, we’re seeing slightly lagging demand on the builder/contractor level. We want to close that gap, quickly.

Entrepreneurs and innovative thinking can also be the driving force behind a recovery — especially in the new building culture. With the growing interest and demand for green jobs, entrepreneurs now have the opportunity to get in on the ground floor of the new greener economy — education, training, support, equipment, financing and certification. It’s a turnkey opportunity.

NCFI, for example, is preparing a new wave of success-driven craftsmen with thebest knowledge and skills to build truly sustainable homes and buildings for the next 100 years. While we continue to innovate our products, NCFI also strives to provide the necessary technical information and industry training through the Certified Gold Star Applicator program (for spray foam insulation) and the Tier One Program (for roofing systems).

As an employer, it’s critical to find, recruit and train an infrastructure of  responsible applicators, installers and contractors to help keep up with the growing  demand for green building. NCFI, for example, is looking for hard workers who demand excellence and provide the same for his customers. We encourage you to seek-out long-term relationships with prospects that invest their time and energy to go out and make good things happen — people willing to lead by doing the right things over and over. It is these green collar workers that will continue to help green construction shine as the bright spot in the building industry.

Nelson Clark

Nelson Clark is senior vice president, NCFI Polyurethanes. Since 1966, NCFI has been driving the very future of how to build healtier, high-performance homes and buildings in the United States. A provider of high-performance spray foam insulation and roofing products, NCFI is also a member of the U.S. Green Building Council. Visit and