Connie Hedegaard: "Green sector offers enormous potential for job creation in Europe"
The European Commission today outlined measures to maximise job opportunities in the green economy. The Green Employment Initiative Communication presents an integrated framework to allow labour market and skill policies to play an active role in the transition towards a green, low-carbon, energy and resource-efficient economy.
EU Climate Action Commissioner Connie Hedegaard said: "Green jobs are among the fastest growing and the most resilient of the European economy. Instead of being outsourced, local skills are being sought in sectors like energy efficiency of buildings, pipe insulation, recycling and innovative renewable technologies. In these areas employment has grown even during the crisis. In a Europe with 26 million unemployed Europeans it is not enough to create growth. We must also expand in areas that can generate jobs. The green sector offers enormous potential for job creation and we have to make sure Europe can harvest its benefits in full."
Better targeting of labour market policies and tools, and closer coordination with environment, climate and energy policies, are essential to exploit the full employment potential of "green sectors". This process also brings important challenges, as the economic transformation leads not only to jobs being created, but also to others being redefined.
The initiative complements Communications on the Circular Economy and on a Green Action Plan for small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs).