More than a million new green jobs could be created by 2050.
That’s the suggestion made by the Local Government Association (LGA) in a new report published today, which predicts nearly 700,000 direct jobs could be created in England’s low carbon and renewable energy economy by 2030, rising to more than 1.18 million by 2050.
The LGA is urging the government to work with councils to develop post-coronavirus economic recovery options, including proposals for a jobs guarantee programme, national skills and employment schemes and devolved funding for councils and combined authorities so they can work with businesses and education providers to train and retrain young people and older workers.
The report predicts demand for green jobs will rapidly increase as the nation transitions to a net zero economy and will help to counter the unprecedented job losses that have been seen as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
The LGA forecasts 46% of the estimated 693,628 total low carbon jobs by 2030 will be in clean electricity generation and providing low carbon heat for homes and businesses – these roles could involve manufacturing wind turbines, installing solar panels and installing heat pumps.
It says around a fifth of jobs by 2030 are likely to involve installing energy efficiency products, while a further 19% will be based on providing low carbon financial, legal and IT services and producing alternative fuels, such as bioenergy and hydrogen.
A further 14% of jobs will be directly involved in manufacturing low-emission vehicles and associated infrastructure
Councillor Sir Richard Leese, Chair of the LGA’s City Regions Board, said: “Councils are driving the climate change agenda at a local level, through ambitious projects and targets, which is beginning to influence local economic growth plans and skills programmes.
“Demand for green jobs is due to sky-rocket as we move towards a net zero economy and local government, with its local knowledge and expertise, is best placed to ensure the workforce in every region of the country can successfully surf the new wave of employment opportunities.
“Localising and devolving skills investment, back to work support and any job guarantee will be critical to ensuring everyone benefits from new local jobs, including these one million new low carbon jobs.
“To help meet national climate change targets and capitalise on the green jobs revolution, councils need to be given long-term funding, devolved powers and easier access to complex government funding pots to help realise the government’s target of being carbon neutral by 2050.”