China is leading a global surge in clean energy jobs, contributing over half of the growth. The International Energy Agency warns of emerging skill shortages. Energy jobs reached 67 million in 2022, growing by 3.5 million since 2019. Asia is leading in renewable energy investment and capacity.
The Global Surge in Clean Energy Jobs
The International Energy Agency (IEA) has reported a significant surge in job opportunities in the global energy sector, driven notably by clean technologies. The report highlighted China’s role in contributing over half of this growth, while also raising concerns about emerging skill shortages. In 2022, the total number of energy-related jobs worldwide reached 67 million, marking a growth of 3.5 million since the pre-pandemic levels.
China’s Dominance in the Clean Energy Workforce
China has emerged as a leader in the global clean energy workforce, boasting the largest energy workforce with over 19 million employees. The clean energy sector in China constitutes about 60% of the nation’s total energy workforce, showcasing a significant increase since 2019. The country witnessed a growth of 2 million jobs in the clean energy sector and a notable decline of 600,000 jobs in fossil fuel-related industries between 2019 and 2022, signaling a major shift towards cleaner energy sources.
Global Trends in Renewable Energy and Skilled Labor Shortages
Renewable energy investment in Asia, primarily driven by China, has increased by 23%, while significant job opportunities are being created in the clean energy sector worldwide. However, the IEA has warned about potential skilled labor shortages, particularly for vocational workers and STEM professionals, which could impede the further expansion of the energy workforce. The report emphasizes the need for policymakers to prioritize a people-centered, equitable transition and invest in job training to support the ongoing shift towards clean energy.