Climate Action

These 4 charts show the key trends in environmental jobs

environmental jobs charts green skills hiring talent energy transition climate change

Environmental jobs: Green entrepreneurship is growing faster than overall entrepreneurship, says LinkedIn’s Global Green Skills Report 2022. Image: REUTERS/Pascal Rossignol

Stephen Hall
Writer, Forum Agenda
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  • Green entrepreneurship is growing faster than overall entrepreneurship, says LinkedIn’s Global Green Skills Report 2022.
  • Overall, job postings requiring green skills have grown by 8% annually over the past five years, it adds.
  • But the share of green talent has only grown by roughly 6% each year, meaning there is a skills gap that needs to be closed.
  • LinkedIn also found there are only 62 women for every 100 men with green skills.

The green economy cannot happen without green talent. This means people will need everything from engineering skills to complex problem-solving capabilities, according to the United Nations Environment Programme.

The good news is that it seems people are acquiring these skills, according to LinkedIn. Green entrepreneurship is growing faster than overall entrepreneurship worldwide, its Global Green Skills Report 2022 says.

And the share of entrepreneurs adding green skills to their profiles has increased, with the top skills added including sustainability, renewable energy and sustainable design.

global growth in entrepreneurs environmental jobs green hirings
Green entrepreneurship is growing faster than overall entrepreneurship, according to LinkedIn. Image: LinkedIn Global Green Skills Report

Environmental jobs on the rise

While LinkedIn found job postings requiring green skills grew at 8% annually over the past five years, the share of green talent has grown at just 6% per year over the same period, indicating a shortage of workers as demand continues to grow.

However, while workers are increasingly acquiring green skills, the volume of transitions into green and greening roles is still too low to have a transformative impact by itself, the report says.

Workers continue to transfer into environmental jobs but the volume is low.
Workers continue to transfer into environmental jobs but the volume is low. Image: LinkedIn Global Green Skills Report

The green divide

The report also shows a direct link between countries' income levels and green hiring.

The share of green talent grew by 39% in high-income countries between 2015 and 2021, but by 37% in upper-middle income countries, 31% in lower-middle income countries and 18% in low-income countries.

The chart below shows that high-income and upper-middle income countries have maintained a steady green hiring rate in 2020, while lower-income countries have started to decelerate.

Environmental jobs: A chart showing relative green hiring rate by country income-level from 2016 to 2021.
There’s a link between countries' income levels and hiring for environmental jobs Image: LinkedIn Global Green Skills Report

Green gender gap

For a just and successful green transition, it’s also essential that all available talent is utilized. However, LinkedIn found there are only 62 women for every 100 men with green skills – unchanged since 2015.

All countries analyzed for the report have grown their share of female green talent in recent years – from 6.4% in 2016 to 8.9% in 2021, on average. But the share of male green talent grew at a similar pace – from 10.3% to 14.2%.

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However, half of the countries included in the report have shown some reduction in their green gender gaps. The chart below shows the top 25 countries closing this gap.

A chart showing the top 25 countries with the fastest-narrowing gender gaps for environmental jobs.
These are the countries with the fastest-narrowing gender gaps for environmental jobs. Image: LinkedIn Global Green Skills Report

Taking advantage of the opportunities

Accelerating young skills and talent for green jobs will be one of the topics on the agenda at the COP27 climate talks in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt, this November.

We can expect to see “millions of new environmental jobs created globally in the next decade, driven by new climate policies and commitments”, according to LinkedIn CEO Ryan Roslansky.

  • Installers and technicians for both solar and wind energy
  • Sales jobs in solar energy
  • Environmental engineers and scientists

Globally, the transition to clean energy is expected to generate 13.3 million new jobs globally by 2030, offsetting the 2.7 million jobs expected to be lost in fossil fuel sectors.

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Related topics:
Climate ActionEnergy TransitionJobs and the Future of WorkEducation and Skills
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