With Global Wind Day being celebrated today (15 June), it is only appropriate to bring out the statistics from IRENA’s “Renewable Energy and Jobs – Annual Review 2016” report, which shows that wind energy saw an employment increase of 5% in 2015 and that there are now 1.1 million people working in the sector.
Renewable energy in general has also recorded a 5% increase in employment compared to 2014, with more than 8.1 million people involved in the industry.
Countries with the most renewable energy jobs in 2015 included China, Brazil, the United States, India, Japan, and Germany – which leads with renewable energy jobs number within the European Union, employing nearly as many as France, the United Kingdom, and Italy combined.
The United Kingdom, Germany and Denmark were the global leaders in offshore wind employment.
Overall, job figures in the EU declined for the fourth year due to weak economic growth, IRENA said. Employment rate fell by 3% to 1.17 million in 2014, the last year for which data is available.
The solar photovoltaic (PV) sector remains the largest renewable energy employer worldwide with 2.8 million jobs. Liquid biofuels was the second largest global employer with 1.7 million jobs, followed by wind power with 1.1 million global jobs.
“As the ongoing energy transition accelerates, growth in renewable energy employment will remain strong,” said IRENA Director-General Adnan Z. Amin. “IRENA’s research estimates that doubling the share of renewable energy in the global energy mix by 2030 – enough to meet global climate and development targets – would result in more than 24 million jobs worldwide.”
Global Wind Day is a worldwide event that occurs annually on 15 June. It is a coordinated action between WindEurope (formerly known as EWEA), the Global Wind Energy Council and the national associations to introduce the general public to wind energy through a series of activities.