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LEDS in Practice: Create green jobs


This publication, Create green jobs to realize the benefits of low emission development, was produced in partnership with the International Labour Organization and is part of our LEDS in Practice series, which gives an overview of selected benefits and development goals linked to low emission development strategies (LEDS) and Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs).

How is low emission development linked to employment?

Addressing climate change is imperative to preserving jobs today and to securing the resilience of economies and societies for future jobs. Estimates based on the International Labour Organization (ILO)’s Global Economic Linkages model suggest that unmitigated climate change—with associated negative impacts on enterprises and workers—will have negative effects on output in many industries, with drops of 2.4% by 2030 and 7.2% by 2050, whereas greener economies could reverse the trend and yield productivity gains.

The implementation of LEDS will cause shifts in the volume, composition, and quality of employment across sectors and will affect the level and distribution of income. In particular, eight economic sectors employing around 1.5 billion workers, approximately half the global workforce, will undergo major changes: agriculture, forestry, fishing, energy, resource intensive manufacturing, recycling, buildings, and transport.

Key messages

  • Transitions to low carbon, environmentally and socially sustainable economies can become a strong driver of job creation, job upgrading, social justice, and poverty eradication if properly managed with the full engagement of governments, workers, and employers’ organizations.
  • At the same time, climate change poses major risks to economic prosperity and social progress. Uncontrolled climate impacts will cause damage to infrastructure, disrupt business activity, and destroy jobs and livelihoods on an unprecedented scale.
  • While the job creation potential outweighs the risks of job losses, and positive labor market outcomes can be expected overall, a just and fair transition for all is necessary, leaving no one behind.

Download the paper here: Create green jobs to realize the benefits of low emission development

Also in the LEDS GP series on realizing the benefits of low emission development:

Image credit: International Labour Organization