Campaign Against Climate Change: climate jobs

KC JOURNAL NO 27 JULY 2011

Climate jobs are jobs that cut down the amount of greenhouse gases we put in the air and thus slow down climate change. ‘Green jobs’ can mean anything, from jobs in the water industry to national parks and many more things. All these are jobs necessary. But they do not affect global warming. By climate jobs, we mean jobs that tackle the main sources of emissions. The three main greenhouse gases are carbon dioxide (CO), methane and nitrous oxide. In Britain, CO is the most important. Society is putting CO emissions into the atmosphere by burning coal, oil and gas. It is important that emissions be cut as fast and deeply as possible. The million new climate jobs. They also do not mean jobs with a climate label or a climate aspect, old jobs with new names, or ones with ‘sustainable’ inserted into the job title.

Direct government employment means secure, flexible, permanent jobs. Workers with new climate jobs will not always keep doing the same thing, but they will be retrained as new kinds of work are needed.

Benefits of climate jobs for society

A million climate job will create other new jobs in two ways. First, there will be many more jobs in the supply chain. The climate jobs industries will employ people directly in making the components for equipment, putting the components together, installing and maintaining machinery. These will all be part of the million new jobs. Then there will be the workers who make the supplies and services the industries will require. A new reasonable estimate is that for one million ‘indirect jobs’.

The second way is called ‘induced jobs’. A million and a half new workers will spend more money than they did if they were on welfare. They will buy shoes, clothes, cinema tickets, meals, cameras, fishing rods, tickets to gigs, and so on. More people will then leave jobs supplying these things. The workers at those new jobs will have money to spend, too, and that will create more jobs. A reasonable estimate is that climate jobs will create an extra quarter of a million induced jobs. In all, we estimate this will take millions of people off welfare.

Climate jobs will be decent, fair and safe jobs. The government will decide where jobs go. Building and transport jobs will go where people live. But manufacturing jobs can be sited where people need them most, to save communities. And than can be done without wasting money on tax breaks for private companies. Workers who traditionally would not be hired for some jobs, like woman and people with disabilities, would get a fair chance. Apprenticeships could give school leavers a decent start in life.

In brief, climate jobs will not only create much-needed jobs but will also address climate change issues.

Benefits of climate jobs for governments

Climate jobs have the benefit of saving money on taxes and benefits. Unemployed workers cost government money that they collect in benefits and unemployment grant. They also do not pay tax.

In terms of affordability for governments, climate jobs will not cost a lot in terms of investment. They will however require the political will to make the decisions to implement climate jobs.


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