*Saving the climate equals 8 million jobs **in the power industry**, reveals Greenpeace*
Canberra, Australia, 14 September 2009 – The renewable power industry could support 6.9 million jobs by 2030, if world leaders seize the opportunity to invest in a greener future by securing a strong treaty at December’s Climate Summit in Copenhagen, according to a report launched today by Greenpeace International and the European Renewable Energy Council (EREC).
A switch from coal to renewable electricity generation will not just avoid 10 billion tons of CO_2 emissions, but will create 2.7 million more jobs by 2030 than if we continue business as usual. Conversely, the global coal industry - which currently supports about 4.7 million employees worldwide - is likely to contract by more than 1.4 million jobs by 2030, due to rationalisation measures in existing coal mines.
“Global leaders can tackle the twin crises of global economic recession and climate change head on by investing in renewable energy,” said Sven Teske, Greenpeace International’s senior energy expert and lead author of the report. “For each job lost in the coal industry the Energy [R]evolution creates three new jobs in the renewable power industry. We can choose green jobs and growth or unemployment, ecological and social collapse.”
Greenpeace’s latest research under the Energy [R]evolution, which provides a model for cutting emissions while achieving economic growth, illustrates how the transition to clean energy will provide more jobs by 2030 in the power sector than would be available if it stays on the current carbon-intensive path. However it is the role of responsible leaders and governments to acknowledge this as soon as possible and to provide jobs and retraining to communities affected by this transition.
“Now is the time to put in place a ‘just transition’ to sustainably transform the jobs of today and develop the decent and green jobs of tomorrow, “added Guy Ryder, General Secretary of the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC). “The union movement, as well as the authors of this report, believe ambitious climate action by world leaders can and must be a driver for sustainable economic growth and social progress.”
The report: ‘Working for the Climate: Renewable Energy & The Green Job [R]evolution’ is based on Greenpeace’s Energy [R]evolution(1) and research from the Institute for Sustainable Futures (ISF) at the University of Technology Sydney (2). The report shows that by 2030, 6.9 million people could work for the renewable power industry, and another 1.1 million jobs would be created due to higher efficiency in electrical applications (3).
"There are already 450,000 people working in the renewable energy industry in Europe,
representing a turnover of more than EUR 40 billion. This research proves that renewable energy is key to tackling both the climate and economic crises," said Christine Lins, Secretary General of the European Renewable Energy Council (EREC).
Alexandra Dawe, Greenpeace International communications officer: +31 629 00 1146
Sven Teske, Greenpeace Climate and Energy Campaigner in Canberra/ Australia: +61434083712
Greenpeace international Press Desk, +31 20 718 24 70
*Notes to Editors:*
1) In October 2008 Greenpeace International and the European Renewable Energy