According to Labour, the UK Government lost 75,000 environmental jobs over the last five years – including jobs in solar power, onshore wind, renewable electricity and bioenergy
Currently, there is a global push for more Green Deal type recoveries – in richer countries which believe that they see pre-COVID levels of normality over the horizon.
Now, the Labour party are calling for Conservatives to bring forward UK plans for a green investment of £30billion, to support up to 400,000 jobs in low-carbon industries.
Data finds that 33,800 direct jobs and a further 41,400 jobs in the supply chain for low carbon and renewable sectors have been lost. Between 2014 and 2019, jobs in solar power, onshore wind, renewable electricity and bioenergy have significantly decreased. There has also been a fall in the number of jobs in the energy efficiency sector.
‘The UK must rise to this moment’
Keir Starmer, Labour leader, commented: “The UK must rise to this moment and lead by example.
“That means rapid action to create good, green jobs across the country. And it means a proper strategy to buy, make and sell more in Britain, to create good, unionised jobs in clean energy and through supply chains.”
The EU released their ‘Fit for 55’ plan last month, proposing new ideas such as making sure all transport is zero-carbon by 2035. Transport is 7% of the EU’s GDP, so an overhaul in power sources and infrastructure is sure to initially cost them a huge amount. The EU also outline that manufacturing and infrastructure will bring hundreds of thousands of new environmental jobs.
‘A decade of broken promises’
At the G7 summit in June, countries agreed to continue policies they had already established. The event was labelled by involved Governments as a success for climate policy, but there were no new proposals or speeding-up of plans. There was no announcement about UK environmental jobs either.
States re-iterated their plans to create net zero carbon emissions by 2050, half collective emissions by 2030, increase climate finance to 2025 and finally conserve or protect atleast 30% of land and oceans by 2030. The UK was criticised by some for contributing lukewarm ideas at the G7 meeting, with doubts rising about the possibility of decisive moves on climate as the UK-hosted COP26 inches closer.
Starmer further said: “We’ve had a decade of broken promises on green jobs and climate action under the Conservatives. And we are going backwards in Scotland, too. For all the rhetoric, both parties have overseen a significant loss of green jobs.”