Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Jobs in the Energy Sector

South Africa like many other countries in the South faces two seemingly intractable problems: poverty and joblessness.

Any solution to one problem must address the other for the country to progress, but in this truth also lies the seed for a greener and more sustainable future for the country and its people.

Indeed, South Africa sits atop a treasure trove of renewable energy sources, from wind and marine energy to some of the best solar resources in the world. Greenpeace believes that harnessing these resources would not only make a massive contribution in the global fight against climate change, but would also create the much vaunted “better life for all South

Africans” including a brand new industry with thousands of green, sustainable jobs. In essence, it is about investing in people and in our future.

The Greenpeace South African Energy Sector Jobs to 2030 report is aimed at initiating dialogue around the twin issues of renewable energy and green jobs and presenting real, feasible solutions for a country in the throes of the problems created by a world transfixed by global warming. Chief among the opportunities offered by renewable energy is the creation of 78 000 direct jobs, and countless thousands of other indirect jobs in less than 20 years if the country finds the political will to read the writing on the wall and start overhauling its entire energy supply process.

The questions are stark. The answers are clear. The timing is right. It is the implementation that requires courage, determination - and vision.

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