Renewables Transition Would Bring Net Job Gain to Canada
A 25-year transition to renewable energy would create almost twice as many renewable energy jobs in Canada as the number of fossil fuel jobs that would be lost, according to author Guy Dauncey, founder of the British Columbia Sustainable Energy Association.
“The transition to 100% renewable energy would have ripple effects across the economy, but most of the new jobs would be generated in four sectors: electricity, buildings, transportation, and farming,” Dauncey reports. “By the end of the transition, there would be as many new permanent green jobs as there are jobs in fossil fuels today.”
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Out of the 19 million jobs in Canada’s economy, the fossil fuel industry accounts for 550,000 direct and indirect positions, and the wages those employees earn support another 245,000 “induced” jobs. So although fossil fuels are widely seen as a cornerstone of Canada’s economy, only 4% of Canadian workers depend on the industry for their income.
Dauncey calculates the jobs that would be created in Canada in the course of the transition to a 100% renewable energy economy. “By the time the transition was complete, the building retrofit jobs and the renewable energy installation jobs would end, but the cycling, farming, and transit operating jobs would continue, and the cycle of infrastructure renewal would begin for the solar, wind, geothermal, and railway installations,” he writes.
“Taken together, there would be 876,000 new permanent green jobs, compared to the 850,000 jobs in fossil fuels that would have ended.”