Green jobs to double by 2020
The global market for environmental products and services is
projected to double from US$ 1370 billion at present to US$ 2740 billion
by 2020. Half of this market is in energy efficiency while the balance
is in sustainable transport, water, sanitation and waste management.
The Green Jobs Asia project is being implemented in Sri Lanka from
October 2010 till July 2012 supported by the Australian Government under
the ILO Australia partnership,” said Labour and Labour Relations
Minister Gamini Lokuge at the opening of the National Green Jobs
Conference at the Ceylon Continental Hotel, Colombo.
The conference held on January 24 and 25 was organised by the
International Labour Organisation, Ministry of Labour and Labour
Relations and the Australian Government.
Minister Lokuge said that green jobs reduce the environmental impact
of enterprises and economic sectors, to levels that are sustainable.
This includes jobs that help to protect ecosystems and biodiversity.
Reduce energy, materials and water consumption through high efficiency
strategies, de carbonise the economy and minimise or altogether avoid
generation of all forms of waste and pollution.
According to a report by the United Nations Environment Program
(UNEP) under a joint green jobs initiative with the International Labour
Office (ILO), growing numbers of green jobs will be created as the move
is towards a low-carbon and more sustainable economy.
Additional jobs will be created, some employment will be substituted,
certain jobs may be eliminated without direct replacement, many existing
professions such as plumbers will simply be transformed and redefined,
employment will be affected in four ways towards a greater
sustainability by green jobs.
The main goal of the Green Jobs Project is to assist Sri Lanka to
shift to a low-carbon, environmentally friendly and climate resilient
economy that helps accelerate the jobs recovery, reduce social gaps,
support development goals and realise decent work.
The main activities of the project in Sri Lanka include a research
study on the environment-employment economy linkages; training,
awareness raising programs to address the needs of social partners and a
demonstration project for the creation of green jobs and decent work in
Around 2.3 million people have in recent years found new jobs in the
renewable energy sector alone. Employment in alternative energies may
rise to 2.1 million in wind and 6.3 million in solar power by 2030.
Projected investments of US$ 630 billion in 2030 would translate into
at least 20 million additional jobs in the renewable energy sector. In
agriculture 12 million people could be employed in biomass for energy
and related industries.
Investments in improved energy efficiency in buildings could generate
an additional two to 3.5 million green jobs in Europe and United States.
Six technical sessions were held during the two days which included
Green jobs for a sustainable future, Sri Lanka’s policy
outlook-synergies to realise green jobs potential, Promoting green jobs
in Sri Lanka through tripartism and the Green jobs perspectives in key
The Green Jobs Initiative is a partnership established in 2007
between the ILO, UNEP and the International Trade Union Confederation
ITUC. The International Organisation of Employers (IOE) joined in 2008.