The green jobs shift: not-so-green jobs are not so numerous, but better paid

The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives has released the first study of its important new Climate Justice research program, which is seeking to understand how the shift to a green economy can be accomplished without sacrificing social justice.

As Marc Lee, one of the authors, points out in this summary, jobs that would decline in a green economy — like oil and gas and carbon-intensive manufacturing — are not that numerous, but well-paid. Those likely to grow in a green economy, like energy retrofitting, are numerous but not well-paid. To maintain political support, a green shift has to take that social equity consideration into account.

The cost of such a shift for BC? Lee estimates about $2 billion a year, well within the range of the current carbon tax regime.