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Renewable Energy: Employment

Volume 503: debated on Thursday 14 January 2010

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills how many people have been employed in the renewable energy sector in each year since 2003; and what recent assessment he has made of the potential for the creation of jobs consequent on the Government's steps to encourage the use of renewable energy. (309966)

I have been asked to reply.

The renewable energy sectors are new and emerging sectors that are not explicitly identified within the traditional statistical classifications.

Although there will be some displacement as we restructure our economy, the Renewable Energy Strategy will create significant job opportunities. Based on information in a report produced by Innovas for the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) in 2009, ‘Low Carbon and Environmental Goods and Services: an industry analysis’, we estimate that in 2007/08 up to 390,000 people were employed in the renewable energy sector, including bioenergy employment.

Based on Innovas projections and Labour Force Survey data, we estimate that the Renewable Energy Strategy, combined with a growing market for renewable energy across Europe and globally, could increase UK employment in the renewable energy sector by up to a further 500,000 people by 2020.