This is borne out year after year in reports by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), an intergovernmental organization that announced in its 2017 report that the number of people actively working in the renewable energy sector grew to 9.8 million in 2016, an increase of 1.1% on the year before.
In the case of solar photovoltaic energy, with 3.1 million employees, the annual increase was in the order of 12%, with both consolidated economies, such as China and the USA, and emerging ones, like India, responsible for the growth.
This trend is not a fleeting illusion. It finds plenty of support in international institutions such as the European Parliament, which, at the start of this year, overwhelmingly endorsed the target that at least 35% of energy consumed in the European Union should come from renewable sources by 2030. Much of this will be met by wind, a sector that already directly employs more than a quarter of a million people in the Old Continent.
Build sustainably, or don’t build at all
In this respect, a profound transition is under way in the construction sector, which is seeking to end its sad hegemony as the world’s biggest emitter of greenhouse gases, with 35% of the global total. The United Nations Environment Programme estimates that – without a radical change in construction methods – current emissions will double within 20 years.
This is why, in developing countries, new trends in green and sustainable construction offer enormous opportunities. Population growth, prosperity and increasing urbanization represent up to 40% of the GDP in some countries and employ over 100 million people worldwide.
Business as unusual
Now you already have some snippets of what the jobs market in renewable energies and sustainable construction will look like in the short term, do you not think the smartest decision for your future could lie in helping mitigate the consequences of climate change?
ACCIONA distances itself from conventional ways of doing business, demonstrating that you can generate benefits for society and the environment, without foregoing economic returns.