What is the Green Jobs Taskforce?
The Green Jobs Taskforce, launched 12th November 2020, forms part of the Ten Point Plan for a Green Industrial Revolution set out by the Government. The Taskforce is made up of 17 individuals, all from different backgrounds, who have been brought together to advise Government, industry and the education sector on how the UK can deliver the Government’s ambition for two million green jobs in the UK by 2030.
The Taskforce was asked to focus on the following:
- Required skills to drive a green recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic;
- Required skills to reach net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050;
- How the UK can ensure green jobs are good jobs, and open to all; and
- How workers in high carbon-sectors can be supported to transition to the new green economy.
What is the Green Jobs Taskforce Report?
The Green Jobs Taskforce Report is made up of the Taskforce’s recommendations on how to achieve the Government’s ambition for two million green jobs in the UK by 2030. The report includes evidence on the skills that are needed as well as how Government, industry, the education sector, and other stakeholders, can work together in the transition to net zero.
Key Findings and Recommendations of the Green Jobs Taskforce
Sectors where change will be crucial to meeting net zero
The Taskforce prioritised sectors where they believed change will be most crucial when meeting the net zero target and where they found the most evidence to be able to draw conclusions. The sectors identified are:
Power – including renewables such as wind, solar and hydropower, nuclear power, grid infrastructure, energy storage and smart systems technology;
Business and industry – including hydrogen production and industrial use, carbon capture, utilisation and storage, and industrial decarbonisation;
Homes and buildings – including retrofit, building new energy-efficient homes, heat pumps, smart devices and controls, heat networks and hydrogen boilers;
Transport – including low or zero emission vehicles, aviation and maritime, rail, public transport and walking or cycling;
Natural resources – including nature restoration, tree planting and decarbonising agriculture, waste management and recycling;
Enabling decarbonisation – including science and innovation for climate change, green finance, circular economy and energy networks;
Climate adaptation – including flood defences, retrofitting of buildings to be resilient to extreme weather/climate events, nature-based solutions to reduce climate impacts and civil and mechanical engineering for infrastructure adaptation.
Key recommendation themes from the Green Jobs Taskforce:
The Green Jobs Taskforce have identified 3 key themes that drive the recommendations to hit the Government’s target. The themes are:
- Theme 1: Driving investment in net zero to support good quality green jobs in the UK
- Theme 2: Building pathways into good green careers
- Theme 3: A just transition for workers in the high carbon economy
Theme 1: Key recommendations
Theme 1 focuses on the need for the UK to have a plan that leverages sustained net zero investment across nations and regions in order to create quality green jobs in the UK. The recommendations set out in the report are as follows:
- The government should publish a detailed net zero strategy before COP26 which sets out how the UK will reach its decarbonisation targets for 2035 and 2050, to give industry, workers and skills providers the confidence they need to invest in the transition.
- The government should use net zero policy and funding to promote good green jobs, skills and competitive supply chains within the scope of international law and trade obligations.
- The government should work with industry to extend its green recovery programmes to direct spending towards low carbon activities with rapid job creation potential, in areas at risk of unemployment.
- The government should work with industry, unions and other key stakeholders to actively set out, as part of the net zero Strategy, how it will ensure that the green jobs created by employers are good quality as defined by the Good Work Plan, regardless of skills base.
- The government should establish a UK-wide body with national representation to ensure momentum and coherence on workforce transition, including progress in delivery. The national body should be supported by local transition bodies to ensure effective place-based strategies for the transition.
Theme 2: Key recommendations
Theme 2 focuses on the increases in demand for green skills. The recommendations set out in the report are as follows:
- To address the skills gap and ensure green jobs are open to all, industry bodies and all employers in the green economy should prioritise the creation of a diverse workforce and should share best practice across the economy.
- As part of a well-sequenced curriculum, government, employers and education providers should promote the effective teaching of climate change and the knowledge and skills (in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) and other key subjects) required for green jobs.
- Employers and government should work with the skills and education sector to attract and retain talented teachers to teach subjects, including in STEM, which are important for green jobs.
- Industry, the education sector, and government should work together to ensure green careers advice and pathways are a continuous offer for all.
- Building on existing work to review green apprenticeships, government should map, review and enhance other training pathways (e.g. traineeships, T-levels, internships and skills bootcamps) to ensure they support a diverse, inclusive and net zero-aligned workforce across the UK.
Theme 3: Key recommendations
Theme 3 focuses on how the UK must manage the transition to net zero in an inclusive way. The recommendations set out in the report are as follows:
- Building on the Skills for Jobs White Paper, industry, government, and skills providers should ensure the adult skills system can meet the challenge of the transition to net zero. This includes being responsive to local demand and supporting workers in high carbon sectors to take opportunities in the new economy.
- Employers, industry bodies, government and unions should work together to tackle barriers to retraining and upskilling so that no worker is left behind by the transition to net zero.
- Employers and sector bodies should set out business and skills plans for the net zero transition, engaging unions and workers.
- To boost private investment and decarbonisation of industry, government should prioritise supporting high carbon sectors to transition and increase productivity and competitiveness, thereby protecting jobs and local economies.
- Where local economies depend on a source of high carbon employment, government should work with local government, employers and workers to diversify local economies, recognising the safety net that is already in place to support workers.
As an installer in the renewable energy industry, you may be interested in delving further into the key themes, points, and recommendations detailed in the report. To access the full report and read more, please click here.