Clean energy surpasses fossil fuel industry in post-pandemic job creation, says IEA report

Amid increased demand to cut CO2 emissions and meet the net-zero emissions target, there has been a significant rise in investment in the clean energy segment. Hence, the sector has surpassed the fossil fuel industry in terms of job creation post-pandemic. 

There job creation in the clean energy sector in the past three years was more than the jobs created in the fossil fuel sector, according to the World Energy Employment Report of the International Energy Association. 

According to the report, global employment in the energy sector grew by 3.4 million over pre-pandemic levels to 67 million in 2022. 

“Clean energy sectors added 4.7 million jobs globally over the same period and stand at 35 million, while fossil fuels jobs recovered more slowly after layoffs in 2020 and remain around 1.3 million below pre-pandemic employment levels, at 32 million,” said the report. 

Job growth in the clean energy as well as fossil fuel sector remained positive in India compared to pre-pandemic levels of 2019. With this, the country saw the fourth-highest number of new clean energy jobs being created in the past three years.

Energy sectors leading job growth 

The report mentioned five major sectors of the energy industry that led to maximum job creation post-pandemic. These sectors were solar PV, wind, electric vehicles (EVs) and battery manufacturing, heat pumps, and critical minerals mining. These five sectors employed around 9 million workers till now. Out of all the sectors Solar PV emerged as the largest of the sectors with around 4 million jobs. On the other hand, the manufacturing of EVs and their batteries was the largest source of growth. 

Many of the new jobs are in construction and manufacturing, which represent over half of the energy jobs today and have grown by 2.6 million jobs since 2019.

Jobs grew in fossil fuel and clean energy industry in India in 2019-22

There has been an increase in the number of jobs created by the clean energy sector nearly in every region of the world. In contrast, there was a decline in job creation in the fossil fuel industry in many regions of the globe.
However, in India, Indonesia, and the Middle East, there was also a rise in fossil fuel employment above 2019 levels, highlighted the report. In China, there was a significant rise in the energy workforce employed in clean sectors. Today, 60% of China’s energy workforce is employed in clean sectors, compared to just over 50% in 2019, said the report. At present, China’s clean energy manufacturing sectors generate around 3 million employees, majorly in solar PV and EV battery manufacturing jobs.

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Updated: 16 Nov 2023, 11:32 PM IST

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