Graph of the Day: Which energy sources power jobs growth?

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As part of its inaugural Rethinking Energy report, the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) looks at some of the economic benefits that the now – it says – inevitable shift to renewables will bring. High among these is job creation.

According to IRENA – and as illustrated in the graph below – renewable energy technology manufacturing is more labour intensive (per MW of new installation) than coal, natural gas or nuclear.

For this reason, says the report, “when creating energy policies, policy makers should consider the number of jobs their policies will create and how many of these can be localised.”

To expand on this, the report cites the example of South Africa, whose Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP) factors in socio-economic benefits from renewable energy deployment through the use of weighted development criteria during evaluation of the bids.

“Job creation and local content, for instance, both have a 25% weight while assessing bids. Similarly, local ownership and development each have a 15% weight. Other criteria include preferential procurement (10%), management control (5%) and enterprise development (5%).

The report says that early evidence suggests this program has been successful in bringing forward the cost efficient deployment of renewable energy, while also increasing enewable energy job opportunities and boosting local economic development. South Africa’s Energy Ministry estimates REIPPPP’s third window will contribute approximately $US4.4 billion towards national socio-economic development.

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  • John McKeon

    Attention Prime Minister Tony Abbott! Great opportunity to raise employment levels and to generally improve the health of our infrastructure and economy! An opportunity not to be missed!

    • Richard Werkhoven

      Does the renewable energy industry have the $16 mil + to donate to the Libs to buy policy?

      Of course donating this may just start a bidding war. May take much more.

      Without buying the party it won’t happen.

  • I’m gratified to see that IRENA comes up with a similar differential between gas and onshore wind (7 times as many jobs with onshore wind) as I did with my back-of-envelope calculations in a blog post in March 2013