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Not Greenwash-Just Green Jobs!

                                         Not Greenwash-Just Green Jobs!

By Prof. Anju Kumar

 Nothing is constant but
change! An often quoted phrase which has more relevance in today’s time and
age. The pace of change has accelerated with the shift to a green economy, redefining
the labour markets and need for better skills. Sustainable development is the
need of the hour as natural resources are dwindling. The movement from the
fossil fuel model of economy to a green model is imminent. Green jobs help protect
the ecosystems and biodiversity, lessen energy consumption and materials and
conserve water through strategies of high efficiency. It also contributes to
decarbonizing the economy and shuns waste and pollution. A green job also
contributes to a sustainable world. Green economy  is defined as an economy that
aims at reducing environmental risks and ecological scarcities, and that aims
for sustainable development without
degrading the environment.
A green job, also referred to as a green collared job is, “work
in agricultural, manufacturing, research and development (R&D),
administrative, and service activities that contributes substantially to
preserving or restoring environmental quality”
“Decent work is defined as opportunities for women and men to obtain decent and
productive work in conditions of freedom, equity, security and human dignity”. This
is broadly defined by the International Labour Organization, ILO. The United
Nations Environmental Program(UNEP) and the International Labour Organization(ILO)
promote the use of environmentally sound practices.
When an environmentally conscious individual, ties up with an
organization which substantially has greened its operations, then he is working
in a green. The organization can be of a conventional type or can belong to the
green sector constituting an entire gamut of professions which
includes energy, transport, manufacturing, retail, agriculture, building,
materials, transport, services etc.
Any individual working in a green organization must have an
internalised green lifestyle, doing his bit to lead a greener and healthier lifestyle.
Green jobs give an opportunity to people who care for the environment and would
love to be associated with a fulltime green job. The latency of a green job exists in
India as well. Green jobs cover a wide range of skill sets, education
and occupational profiles. The main objective of a green job is to
reduce the environmental impact to sustainable levels in organizations.
So what constitutes a Green Job…
According to ILO, jobs are green
when they “help reduce negative environmental impact ultimately leading to
environmentally, economically and socially sustainable enterprises and
economies. More precisely green jobs are decent jobs that: – “Reduce consumption
of energy and raw materials – Limit greenhouse gas emissions – Minimize waste
and pollution – Protect and restore ecosystems”
The skills, knowledge, training
and experience currently in demand by green employers:
The technical skills required are Industrial trades/Occupations,
Reducing environmental impact, Innovative green ideas/products, public and
government relations, Marketing, Energy conservation, Alternative electricity
production, Sustainable products, Recycling, Remediation/pollutants/waste disposal
and treatment of the environment and Engineering
Apart from energy and enthusiasm, the soft skills that are required
for green jobs are communication skills, critical thinking skills and a can
do attitude
. Green jobs are growing at a rapid pace. The below figure indicates the
projected exponential growth of green jobs over the next few years.

Indicators are statistics used to measure current conditions as well as
to forecast financial or economic trends. The following are some green job
indicators. The employment that is generated by economic activity, the types of
occupations that create that employment, the living and financial conditions of that
employment, the type of green technologies used by that economic activity, the
fraction of companies that use that technology and the demographic divide
taking that employment.
In pursuance of sustainable
developmental goals, countries have to undertake the task of greening the
economy. This also enhances the quality of life for its citizens. This involves
making investments in green technologies, optimizing natural resource
utilization, creating infrastructure that improves productive economic
activities and also ensuring minimal environmental impact. And finally
contributing to sustainable economic growth.
Green jobs create production
processes and other processes which use lesser natural resources which
indirectly benefits the environment. Skill council for green jobs is one of the
skill development initiatives aligned with the National Skill Development
mission in India, promoting green jobs. India is on a fast growth path with
respect to its economy. The challenges that lie in this journey are many.
Having embraced globalization, the leading challenge is to maintain the
environmental standards according to international pledges, increase the non-conventional
GREEN energy consumption and conserving fossil fuels. This is augmented by the
creation of many green jobs in the coming decade. These efforts create decent employment
opportunities, enhance resource efficiency and build low-carbon
sustainable societies and economies.
India green jobs – Report
ILO green jobs Report