A green power advocacy group says North Carolina’s alternative energy companies continue growing rapidly despite the country’s economic troubles.

The on Thursday releases its latest survey of renewable energy and energy efficiency companies.

The group surveys sustainable energy firms across the state to check their condition.

Highlights of the report will include:

• “Total number of sustainable energy jobs in N.C. continue to rise – Based on this year’s Census results, N.C.’s renewable energy and energy efficiency industries continue to grow at a substantial rate, which is unlike most other industries due to our state’s record unemployment numbers and the ongoing national economic slowdown. As of this summer, the sustainable energy industry employed more than 12,000 full-time employees (FTEs) in all regions of North Carolina, which represents a 22 percent increase over last year’s employment numbers.

• “Manufacturing accounts for nearly a third of the renewable energy and energy efficiency jobs estimated in North Carolina.

• “Energy Efficiency is a major business focus area for North Carolina companies,

• “Participating companies were very positive regarding N.C.’s renewable energy and energy efficiency industries continuing to lead the Southeast and a majority of respondents believe that our state is poised to become a national leader provided North Carolina adopts necessary policies and efforts to promote and expand the industries.”

The group said last year that green energy companies employed about 10,000 workers and had a presence in all 100 North Carolina counties.

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