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Renewables are creating more and more jobs: 3.3 million new jobs thanks to the wind energy industry

The Global Wind Energy Council analysis shows the economic and social potential of wind energy industry
Growth of the wind energy industry will bring 3.3 million new jobs over the next few years. This is what has emerged from the new analysis of the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC), the international organisation that represents more than 1,500 companies, organisations and institutions from over 80 countries around the world working in the wind energy sector.

The analysis is based on the global studies conducted by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) on the jobs generated by onshore and offshore wind energy projects in 2017 and 2018, studies which also factored in wind market growth data from the GWEC Market Intelligence, the section of the association that provides in-depth information and analyses drawing on data regarding the global development of the wind energy industry.

The findings show that investment in renewables will drive a socially- and environmentally-responsible economic recovery that can contribute in bolstering systems, making them more resilient and increasing employment.

The wind energy sector is expanding rapidly: today, installed capacity amounts to 751 GW and 1.2 million people are employed in this field worldwide. A global survey by GWEC Market Intelligence showed that in 2020 the workers employed in the wind energy sector were 550,000 in China, 260,000 in Brazil, 115,000 in the United States and 63,000 in India.

According to the forecasts of GWEC, the wind industry will continue to grow over the next five years, reaching a capacity increase of 470 GW and creating 3.3 million new jobs around the world across the entire value chain of the onshore and offshore wind sector – project planning and development, manufacturing, installation, operation, maintenance, and decommissioning – especially in high-growth markets like China, United States, India, Germany, United Kingdom, Brazil, France, Sweden, Spain, South Africa and Taiwan.

Ben Backwell, CEO of GWEC, commented: “The wind industry has a strong track record of creating high-quality and long-term jobs and reviving communities through an array of industrial opportunities. As the world still reels from the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, governments must look to the wind sector as a key industry to create the jobs they need to get their economies back on track”.

Despite the obvious economic, environmental and social advantages of wind and all other renewable sources, stimulus packages offered by countries to face the global crisis caused by the Covid-19 pandemic still include energy from fossil fuels. As Backwell stated, these actions are inconsistent with the calls of Building Back Better (BBB), the ONU strategy to reduce the risk of people, nations and communities ending up in disastrous situations in the future. “Each dollar spent on fossil fuels instead of clean energy means we miss out on potential jobs”, added the GWEC CEO, stressing the importance and urgency of adopting sustainable solutions to face the inevitable economic and climate crisis ahead.