With about 15 million unemployed Americans, the October 2010 unemployment rate came in at 9.6 percent again. If the National Association for Business Economics’ (NABE) prediction is correct, the nation’s unemployment rate will not change much over the next year either.

This morning, the NABE released its economic predictions for the coming year. Among them is that the unemployment rate will stay above 9 percent for 2011.

According to the NABE, we can expect an average of fewer than 150,000 new jobs per month during the first half of the year and then 150,000 — 170,000 new jobs created each month during the last half of 2011. The unemployment rate will stay at 9.5 percent or higher for the first quarter and then begin to slowly decline to 9.2 percent by the end of 2011. While job recovery is typically slow after a recession, if the NABE’s predictions are correct, this will be the slowest job recovery to date.

These predictions could be bad news for green jobs. The political climate in Washington will be changing come January 2011, and there are concerns that the programs that are helping fuel green jobs growth could come to an abrupt halt. If the financial incentives to create green jobs go by the wayside, we may realize little to no growth in eco-friendly industries including renewable energy and green building.

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