Developing Skills for Future Green Economy Jobs
There is far more opportunity than there is ability
- Thomas Edison
This veracity of this statement by one of the world’s greatest inventors, as the world is today, is very debatable because the situation suggests the statement should have been in the reverse. In another statement he said,
We are like tenant farmers chopping down the fence around our house for fuel when we should be using Nature’s inexhaustible sources of energy — sun, wind and tide. … I’d put my money on the sun and solar energy. What a source of power! I hope we don’t have to wait until oil and coal run out before we tackle that.
This statement, made over 80 years ago, is very true today, though all the coal and oil hasn’t totally ran out but we have found that our continued dependence on them is costing us our entire world – through climate change. Hence we are now looking at other sources of energy such as the sun, wind and tide as Edison earlier advised.
The world is today faced with very worrying rise in youth unemployment, just this year Yahoo, Sony, HSBC among other global employers of labour announced thousands of job cuts, an addition to the already grim situation. The International Labour Organization (ILO) reported just recently that there will be over 11 million global job losses by the end of 2013. A very serious one, we all hear about the cuts but no news on how to create future jobs that will absorb the growing youth population to avoid a catastrophe.
We all as youths, policy makers, government, businesses – profit and non-profit, development organizations must at this time look into the future to develop strategies, policies – (development, educational and training) that will equip today’s and future youths with the skills for the challenges of the next phase of job opportunities that future green economies will provide which will be very much dependent on the sun, wind, tide and all the rest renewable energy resources that Edison was making reference to. Its implementation should also be pursued with all commitment and resources that it deserves.
As the world meets later next month at the Rio+20 conference on sustainable development, there should be a constant reminder that anything less of its outcome will not be sustainable but will also be a failure on our part to make use of such a great gathering worthwhile as the 2 conference themes: ‘a green economy in the context of sustainable development poverty eradication’ and ‘the institutional framework of sustainable development’ highlights.
That way we would also avoid the situation where ‘there is far more opportunity than there is ability’ as Edison predicted. I know we can do it, it’s up to us.