The Ministry of Climate Change and Environment has announced the launch of the UAE Green Jobs Programme at the first stakeholder workshop on the subject convened at its headquarters in Dubai.

The UAE Green Agenda 2030, the action framework for the country’s green economy transformation approved by the Cabinet in 2015, dedicates one of its 12 programmes to the Green Jobs Programmes.

The ministry’s earlier scenario study indicates that investment of one to two per cent of GDP per year in greening the economy would create up to 165,000 new jobs by 2030. To leverage such a positive spillover, however, the country needs a coordinated policy action to address the skill gaps between the current labour market and the future requirements for a green economy.

In partnership with the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI), the ministry’s Green Jobs Programme takes stock of domestic policies and initiatives on environmental education and vocational training, as well as international best practices of fostering green jobs.

Working with key authorities and stakeholders, the ministry aims to come up with the best policy approach to green jobs, along with concrete implementation projects. It will also work with statistics agencies to set a workable definition of green jobs and develop a methodology for estimating the current and future numbers of green jobs to assess the trend and predict future skill needs for informed decision-making.

Over 20 representatives from federal and local authorities, including the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation, Ministry of Energy and Industry, Ministry of Education and Ministry of Youth, as well as international organisations such as the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), were invited to the launch event.

A green jobs expert and ministry staff introduced the objectives of the programme, international best practices and the national context of promoting green jobs. This was followed by group discussions on how to move forward this programme in partnership.

In a welcome note, Aisha Al Abdooli, director of green development and environmental affairs at the ministry, said: “The successful transition to a green economy rests on the skills and expertise of the country’s workforce and its ability to leverage local talent. This is clearly in line with the UAE Vision 2021 which aims for a competitive knowledge-based economy and quality social development of the country.”