Investing 1-2% of GDP per year in greening the economy would create up to 165,000 new jobs by 2030
Dubai-UAE: 23 December 2017 – The Ministry of Climate Change and Environment (MOCCAE) announced the launch of the UAE Green Jobs Program at the first stakeholder workshop on the subject convened at its headquarters in Dubai.
Nurturing talent and employment for the prospective green industry is considered as one of the prerequisites for the successful transformation toward a green economy in any country. The UAE Green Agenda 2030, the action framework for the country's green economy transformation approved by the Cabinet in 2015, dedicates one of its twelve programs to the Green Jobs Program.
In partnership with the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI), MOCCAE starts the Green Jobs Program by taking stock of domestic policies and initiatives on environmental education and vocational training, as well as international best practices of fostering green jobs. Working with key authorities and stakeholders, the Ministry aims to come up with the best policy approach to green jobs, along with concrete implementation projects. MOCCAE will also work with statistics agencies to set a workable definition of green jobs and develop a methodology for estimating the current and future numbers of green jobs to assess the trend and predict future skill needs for informed decision-making.
Over 20 representatives from federal and local authorities including the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation, Ministry of Energy and Industry, Ministry of Education and Ministry of Youth, as well as international organizations such as the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), were invited to this launch event. A green jobs expert and MOCCAE staff introduced the objectives of the Program, international best practices and the national context of promoting green jobs. This was followed by group discussions on how to move forward this Program in partnership.
In a welcome note, Eng. Aisha Al Abdooli, Director of Green Development and Environmental Affairs, MOCCAE said: “The successful transition to a green economy rests on the skills and expertise of the country's workforce and its ability to leverage local talent. This is clearly in line with the UAE Vision 2021 which aims for a competitive knowledge-based economy and quality social development of the country.”
Al Abdooli added: “The UAE has seen a rapid rise in the number of jobs in renewable energy and energy efficiency sectors in last few years thanks to the policies promoting investment in solar energy technologies and green buildings. Through a more coordinated effort, we should be able to spread this trend into other sectors and multiply job opportunities. We look forward to working with relevant authorities and stakeholders to actively support youth and future generations engaging in prospective green jobs.”
The Ministry's earlier scenario study indicates that investment of 1-2% of GDP per year in greening the economy would create up to 165,000 new jobs by 2030. To leverage such a positive spillover, however, the country needs a coordinated policy action to address the skill gaps between the current labor market and the future requirements for a green economy and to ensure provision of appropriate education and workforce training to adapt to the expected shift in the job market and prepare for new skillsets. Another challenge is defining the scope of green jobs as there is at present no standard international definition or statistical methodology and countries often consider their own national circumstances when attempting to identify what sectors and professions constitute green jobs.