Four out of 10 jobs are carbon intensive says ILO

CARBON COPY What do we want? Green jobs instead of dirty ones. When do we want them? Immediately after politicians get serious and reach agreement in Copenhagen.

Nearly 40 per cent of all jobs worldwide are in highly carbon intensive sectors, the International Labour Organisation (ILO) has said. The UN body says its contribution to the UN climate change conference in Copenhagen will be to draw attention to the value of “green jobs”.

ILO with other UN agencies can contribute among others to facilitating economic and social transition for key sectors, it says, by the promotion of green jobs and “greening the workplace.”

  • Le BIT va traiter de l’emploi et des emplois verts à la Conférence des Nations Unies sur le changement climatique à Copenhague.
    La OIT se concentrará en los empleos verdes, problemas laborales en la Conferencia sobre Cambio Climático de las Naciones Unidas en Copenhagen

 The ILO’s latest World of Work report attempt to quantify the employment challenge arising from the urgency to curb carbon dioxide emissions. It estimates that nearly 40 per cent of all jobs worldwide – accounting for about 600 million workers – are in highly carbon intensive sectors.

The report says imposing a price on CO2 emissions and using the revenues to cut labour taxes, employment would rise by 0.5 per cent by 2014. This is equivalent to over 14.3 million net new jobs for the world economy as a whole. And even larger gains would arise due to technological change induced by green policies.

Ms Sachiko Yamamoto, director of the ILO Asia and the Pacific office, said: “There is growing international awareness of the need to arrest climate change, in order to put the world economy on a more sustainable track. Already, as part of packages to overcome the ongoing global economic and jobs crisis, countries have launched infrastructure investments designed to promote transitions to a greener economy.

“Such efforts would at the same time serve social objectives because spending on green projects promotes recovery and job creation.”

  •  Green policies and jobs: A double dividend?, chapter from the ILO World of Work report, pdf.
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