In the United Kingdom or UK, in the year 2009, around 600 workers were rendered unemployed as the only major wind turbine factory here on the Isle of Wight was shut down.
This might come as a shock and as a setback for believers and supporters of the clean energy-green job sector, when there are studies and reports about how investment in the clean energy sector can create large scale job opportunities. In fact, world leaders have come out in the open claiming that their respective governments will be investing in the green technologies and the clean energy sectors so as to create more jobs and tackle the problem of unemployment as well as face the challenges of climate change.
The President of the United States of America, Barack Obama, announced plans to invest close to $150 billion in the clean energy sector that will apparently create about 5 million jobs. He is believed to have reportedly quoted “A green, renewable-energy economy isn’t some pie-in-the-sky, far off future. It is now. It is creating jobs now”. We all are aware of the excellent oratory skills of this Nobel-Laureate President of the United States of America, whether his actions too are equally powerful are eagerly being watched and the concretization of the promises made are much awaited, hopefully too.
So far, the country leading in the clean energy-green job philosophy is Denmark. It is ahead of most other countries of the world when it comes to the population employed in the green-sector or green-jobs. It leads the world in the manufacture of turbine, essential component of harnessing energy or power from wind and has thousands of people employed in the manufacture of the same. The government of Denmark has had a long experience with wind power. Its track record of supporting this power goes back to over 30 years or so.
The success of creating jobs out of the green energy sector is not something that cannot be achieved. Yes, there needs to a lot of background work done before kick starting a renewable energy project. There needs to a lot of preparation done before the projects are finally launched. To start with, the governments need to involve the local school and colleges in the vicinity of the areas where the projects would be launched so as to equip the local people with the required skills. Efforts should be made to enroll them in the right training courses that will enhance their skills needed for the jobs.
As per a study by Greenpeace – an international environmental group and the European Renewable Energy Council or EREC – a body that represents the clean energy industries, about 2.7 million jobs could be created in about 20 years from now with a shift to renewable energy sector. Sticking to non-renewable energy sector could in fact lead to a loss of jobs, as the natural and non-renewable sources of energy are depleting fast.
In about a decade alone, which is from the year 1998 to about 2007, reports say that there was an increase in the jobs in the clean energy sector by about a little more than 9 per cent in the United States of America, and this scored over the growth rate of jobs in other sectors of the economy.
A shift to renewable sources of energy, therefore, has a solution not only for the climate crisis that has brought together many a conferences, but also the economic crisis. Unemployment, especially in a period after recession, needs some serious long-term solution. Investment in the renewable and clean sources of energy can be a good way to counter the problem, though after thorough research and planning. For tropical countries like India, which is also a developing nation, renewable energies and the jobs created out of them have huge scope and can also be a boost to the economies of the countries from the developing world.