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Tickers in this Article: FPL, GOOG, URS, GE, FSLR, ADM
Large conglomerates like General Electric (NYSE:GE) and niche players like First Solar (Nasdaq:FSLR) have already created green jobs ahead of the incoming Obama administration. Investors anticipating an upswing in the numbers of green jobs over the next few years may want to consider other companies that may not be at the forefront of renewable energy conversations.

New Administration
The comprehensive Obama-Biden New Energy Plan for America aims to create five million new jobs over the next 10 years. Current leaders in wind and ethanol like GE and Archer Daniels Midland (NYSE:ADM) may create the bulk of new green jobs. But other firms, like Florida-based power generator FPL Group (NYSE:FPL), are actively working to contribute to the cause. (To learn more about ethanol, read The Biofuels Debate Heats Up.)

Utilities Going Green
FPL Group has a number of available employment opportunities, from wind technicians to renewable energy sales managers. A plus for investors hoping to avoid the volatility roller coaster offered by the market is FPL's 0.60 beta. As a measure of market volatility, a stock with a beta below "1" suggests that FPL will not rise or fall as dramatically as a broad market index like the S&P 500.

Green Engineering
San Francisco-based engineering and construction services company URS Corp (NYSE:URS) is seeking individuals to fill the roles of alternative energy managers and environmental planners, primarily on the West coast. Projects for new renewable energy employees range from solar power to coal generation with carbon sequestration. Although URS has a beta of 1.5, the stock is worth following because of its low valuation measures, which include a price/earnings to growth ratio of 1.12 and a price-to-book value of 0.80.

Searching for Alternatives
Internet search provider Google (Nasdaq:GOOG) has started its own initiative to create renewable energy that is cheaper than coal. According to the Energy Information Administration, coal fueled nearly 50% of the electricity generated in the U.S. in 2007. Google plans to assemble a team of engineers and energy experts that will explore multiple renewable energy sources, including geothermal systems, to identify the best solutions. Given Google's position as a leading tech company, investors will have to accept a higher level of volatility displayed by its beta of 1.6. The trade-off for the increased level of risk is the opportunity to share in the growth of the steadily evolving company.

Final Thoughts
The creation of green jobs will not happen all at once. But investors should keep their eyes focused on both large and small players ahead of Obama's push towards the creation of five million green jobs. (To learn more about how major corporations and investors are making and saving money by adopting green practices, read our Green Investing Special Feature.)

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