What Are The Green And Sustainable Jobs Of The Future?

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A heavier focus on sustainability will soon see a rise in brand new careers and green jobs across the UK.  

Key Points:

  • There’s an increasing demand in the construction industry for architects who can design more eco-friendly buildings and labourers who can construct them.
  • Sectors such as agricultural, transportation, fashion, farming and construction will all require a more sustainable way of working, opening up jobs in engineering and manufacturing.
  • Employees with green skills can help to solidify a great reputation for a company’s brand, reduce the business’ carbon footprint, and help it to maintain a key position in supply chains

The Institution of Engineering and Technology released a report in 2020 that found over two-thirds of children hoped to have a career that helps the environment but 71% felt that a lack of understanding and knowledge about green jobs would stop them from reaching their dream profession.  

Having green skills within your business and passing that knowledge on to younger employees or those joining the workforce could prove hugely beneficial to both your company and the individual.  

What green jobs are currently in demand?

As we move towards greener ways of living, there’s an increasing demand in the construction industry for architects who can design more eco-friendly buildings and labourers who can construct them. 

In the Green Jobs Taskforce report to the government, the group specified that those in the industry will need to receive training on modern methods of construction for retrofitting and new build homes to meet the government’s Future Home Standard.

Every part of the supply chain will need to be brought up to speed on low-carbon training, including engineers, construction workers, and supervisors.  

A sustainability consultant could come in handy here and point construction professionals in the right direction to receive the training they need. Another job that’s growing increasingly popular, sustainability consultants help businesses to weave green processes into their overall strategy and lower their carbon footprint.  

With the energy crisis playing out globally, the need for renewable energy is crucial too. Engineers in this sector are in demand as energy companies seek skills in hydroelectric power, solar power, and wind turbines.  

Listen to our training experts discuss how your business can become more sustainable, in our green skills podcast

Which sectors could be made more sustainable? 

With 30% of the UK population reducing their meat consumption in 2021, the focus on the agriculture and farming industries has intensified in recent years. While consumers change their eating habits for their health and the good of the planet, these industries are looking for new ways to make their sectors more sustainable.  

The WWF state that the agriculture industry consumes around 69% of the earth’s fresh water, and they’re helping to find better management practices to conserve the world’s natural resources.  

  • There will be a need for agricultural innovators and engineers to find new ways of working, while reducing water usage and other contributors to climate change.  
  • The transportation industry is also one of the biggest polluters globally, accounting for 24% of global CO2 emissions from fuel combustion. 
  • An emerging green job is that of a clean car engineer who will look for ways to manufacture cars in a more sustainable way, without the use of fossil fuels.  
  • There will also need to be a shift within the whole industry to travelling in the most efficient way, with less dependence on cars and planes.  
  • With the rise of apps like Depop and Vinted, the fashion industry has also come under the microscope when it comes to sustainability.  

Fast fashion has fallen out of favour with Gen Za massive 94% believe companies should address societal and environmental issues.  

Sustainability managers, sustainability business designers, and sustainable fashion designers will be welcomed into the workplace in coming years as the need for a green focus becomes more apparent.  

green jobs of the future infographic

What green jobs will be available?  

As well as new opportunities in construction, farming, and sustainable manufacturing, there will be an increase in more jobs within the science and legal sectors too.

Oceanographers will be required to study our seas, measuring things like water temperatures, marine life, and the number of chemicals present. An oceanographer can earn up to £60,000 a year and the job could take them all around the world.  

Sticking with the water, a wave producer could be a great role for engineers who are fascinated by the power of the tide. Renewable energy is high on the agenda for many countries, including the UK, and harnessing the power of natural resources is key. Tidal experts, as well as solar panel installers, will be in high demand as our reliance on renewable energy increases.  

Environmental scientists, conservation scientists, and geoscientists are just some of the jobs that will be available in the scientific community. Their specific emphasis on preserving the planet will stand them in good stead as they look for developments in the earth’s ecosystems and offer advice on the best way to manage land.  

As more industries turn to the circular economy, bosses will also be looking to recycling experts for advice on how to reduce waste. And environmental justice professionals will be needed to advise on how communities can have access to nutritious food, clean water, and fresh air, while pollution is still a big issue.  

What action will businesses need to take?

The 2022 IPCC report details how much of an impact we’re having on the climate and, fortunately, businesses can really make a difference in moving towards a more sustainable future.  

Employees with green skills can help to solidify a great reputation for the brand, reduce the business’ carbon footprint, and help it to maintain a key position in supply chains, where sustainable providers will soon start seeing themselves favoured over less green companies. This will secure the future growth of the company and ultimately, help to turn the tide on climate change.  

Training your team in sustainability skills can help to give both your business and the planet longevity.  

Take a look at the list of IEMA courses & programmes we offer to help bring your skills up to standard.

Working in partnership with Aspen Waite, your company could also benefit from the Sustain programme which can help you transition towards net-zero carbon emissions.

Picture of Matthew Channell
Matthew Channell
Matthew is TSW Training’s Commercial Director. He writes about performance focussed learning, leadership, and management approaches that have real-world, sustainable impact.
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