Blog | October 23, 2015

Alberta could create tens of thousands of jobs says new coalition

AGEN logoA diverse coalition of Alberta-based groups has come together to push the Alberta government to create tens of thousands of good, sustainable jobs by going green. The Alberta Green Economy Network, comprised of labour, NGOs, green businesses and First Nations supporters, is lobbying the provincial government to act now to reduce emissions and diversify its economy – for the sake of the climate as well as the economy.The network’s submission shows how the province could create more than 54,000 jobs a year while lowering the carbon emissions that are putting the planet’s climate in peril. It also says the province is uniquely positioned to capitalize on the world’s growing green economy.“Alberta has great wind and solar resources, a skilled workforce and a government that wants to diversify its economy,” said Joel French, from Public Interest Alberta at a news conference at the Alberta Legislature today. “The Green Economy Network is uniting people across traditional divides to speak with one voice to say Alberta needs to seize this tremendous opportunity and invest in good low-carbon jobs in order to kick start its move to green energy now.”The Alberta Green Economy Network recommends that the province:
  • Sets science based emission reduction targets in line with other International and provincial jurisdiction
  • Implements a target of 100% renewable energy by 2050 
  • Creates an energy efficiency strategy that would employ tens of thousands of Albertans while lowering energy bills 
  • Puts a price on carbon starting next year at $50/tonne, rising to $120/tonne by 2025 to help fund green jobs, retro-fits and transit while supporting low income Albertans
The transition to a green economy doesn’t have to sacrifice jobs – in fact, the opposite is true. Germany already employs more than 350,000 people in its renewable energy sector and its economy is booming. “We need to start lowering our emissions now,” said Shanth Mano, of C-Returns. “The government needs to take the lead by investing in renewable energy and helping people retro-fit homes and businesses. Our emissions will drop, as will our energy bills.” “There are tens of thousands of good, high quality green jobs ready to be created. We just need a little government help to do it,” said Mike Hudema of Greenpeace Canada. “We are here to urgently tell Alberta’s political leaders the time to act is now.”Go to the Alberta Green Economy Network's websiteView the Alberta Green Economy Network's recommendations to Alberta's Climate Change Advisory Panel