India’s Renewable Energy Push if Implemented Properly Could Mean a Lot of Jobs

India’s renewable energy push could help tackle poverty in rural communities by providing steady incomes, healthcare benefits, and skill-building opportunities to unskilled and semi-skilled workers.

renewable energy

India’s renewable energy push if implemented properly could do more than just slow down global warming. It could help pull millions out of poverty, especially in rural communities.

According to a new study by the Washington DC-based think-tank, World Resources Institute, India’s renewable energy push could help tackle poverty in rural communities by providing steady incomes, healthcare benefits, and skill-building opportunities to unskilled and semi-skilled workers.

Andrew Steer, President of the World Resources Institute said, “Creating good quality renewable energy jobs that will help reduce poverty in rural, underdeveloped regions is a less considered, but crucial added benefit.”

India’s ambitious target of adding 175GW of solar energy capacity by 2022 is expected to create more than 330,000 new jobs over the next five years. These jobs would be in construction, project commissioning and design, business development and operations and management.

These jobs will be “full-time equivalent” states the New Delhi-based think tank Council on Energy, Environment and Water and the Washington Dc-based think-tank Natural Resources Defense Council. So, potentially these jobs could provide steady incomes.

Bharath Jairaj, Director of WRI India’s energy program and lead author of the report said, “Wind and solar growth can be a win-win opportunity for India; helping the country secure a clean energy future while tackling poverty.”

The renewable energy sector is emerging as a big employer globally. IRENA, the Abu Dhabi-based intergovernmental body promoting renewable energy in its 2017 review estimated that 9.8 million people were employed in the sector in 2016. The clean energy sector is growing.

The upward employment opportunities in the sector could support India’s rural poor by offering an alternative to subsistence farming. But this would require policy interventions.

Pamli Deka, manager of WRI’s Electricity Governance Initiative, “The poor – women in particular – find it difficult to take advantage of the growing employment opportunity. The lack of secondary schooling and lack of access to training centres in rural areas are among the barriers. “Even when poor Indians overcome obstacles to attend training programs, the institutes’ curricula don’t often align with industry needs, making it difficult for graduates to secure goodquality jobs.”

Source: ET

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