|The Green Economy Could Create "Tens of Millions" of New Jobs |
September 30, 2008
With day after day of bad economic news, it was heartening to read about a new
report from the United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP), Green Jobs:
Towards Decent work in a Sustainable, Low-Carbon World.
UNEP reports that efforts to curb the climate change are already creating new,
green jobs in both developed and developing world economies, and project that
this trend will continue, growing stronger as the industries mature.
The report defines "green" jobs as ones that "reduce the environmental impact of
enterprises and economic sectors, ultimately to levels that are sustainable."
Most of the jobs discussed in the report are somehow related to environmental
preservation or restoration.
I'm not much of a numbers person, but even I was impressed by the progress
demonstrated by these stats and projections:
By 2020, the global market for environmental products and services is
projected to double from US$1.37 trillion per year at present to US$2.74
trillion, half in energy efficiency and half in sustainable transport, water
supply, sanitation and waste management In the US, clean tech is the third
largest sector for venture capital (after information and bio tech) In China,
more than 19% of venture capital investment is in green industries
2.3 million people have found new jobs in the renewable energy sector
By 2030, an additional 2.1 million will be employed in wind power, and 6.3
million in solar power
Projected investments of US$630 billion by 2030 would translate into at least
20 million additional jobs in the renewable energy sector
So even while we're seeing some scary things about the recession/depression and
job loss, the growing green economy is picking up steam. Doing "the right thing"
by the environment is paying actual, literal dividends in terms of economic
growth and employment!