Scotland is on the brink of a green jobs
revolution with 50,000 posts expected to
be created in the next decade, careers experts
Wind analysts, turbine technicians and
heat-pump installers will all be needed
to cope with the renewable energy rush,
according to Careers Scotland, which has
started a new campaign to raise awareness
of the growing green industry.
They say the number of jobs in fields such
as recycling, conservation and renewables
is set to rocket in the next ten years.
Already there are an estimated 80,000 jobs
in the renewable fields that did not previously
exist, with another 50,000 predicted over
the next decade. Careers Scotland's campaign
the Path is Green, which was launched yesterday,
aims to make sure there are enough skilled
workers to fill the posts.
Alex Blackwood, the head of key labour
market sectors at Careers Scotland, said:
"It ranges from new jobs like wind-turbine
engineers and solar-cell installers to traditional
jobs like plumbing, where they will need
a new skills set.
"Hopefully, young people will see things
like wind farms and say, 'I would like to
build these things. That's the job I want
"Young people interested in climate change
and being green can have it both ways: they
can do their bit to help the environment
and make a good living."
The Scottish Government has set targets
of generating 50 per cent of Scotland's
electricity from renewables by 2020, meaning
that businesses such as wind-turbine companies
and energy firms are expected to expand
to meet demand.
Areas where the number of jobs are expected
to grow include engineers, plumbers, wind-turbine
technicians, boiler-maintenance technicians,
electricians, welders, wind analysts and
solar-panel and heat-pump installers.
Henning von Barsewisch, the managing director
of wind- turbine firm REpower, said his
firm in Edinburgh has grown from two staff
to 45 in the past four years and struggles
to find enough engineers to fill jobs.
"We have to make sure there is the talent
coming into the industry, that people choose
to get an engineering degree and choose
to come into this as a profession," he said.
He added: "We are moving from being on
the fringes to being a key element of the
energy industry. It means creating lots
of jobs. Renewables will be a big employer
in the future." Ros Hart, 25, is an engineer
and works in the wave power sector. She
would recommend her career choice.
"Wave power is a brand-new area of engineering
and every day there are new problems to
solve," she said. " It's good to be involved
in something that is making a difference
and changing the world for the better."
Jim Mather, the minister for enterprise,
energy and tourism, said: "The global challenge
to tackle climate change brings many opportunities
for rewarding careers.
"Our huge renewables potential means Scotland
will be at the forefront of the green energy
revolution, bringing tremendous opportunities
to work in this high-profile industry.
"Working in renewables will not only give
you an exciting and varied career, you'll
also be helping our economic recovery and
helping to save the planet."
The campaign by Careers Scotland will include
advertising, an electronic magazine, an
online quiz and a competition for schools
and colleges to highlight the various jobs
available to young people and let them know
what skills and qualifications are required.
Danny Logue, the director of Careers Scotland,
said: "Young people entering the renewables
sector can expect a long-term career and
will be playing a part in making a difference
to the future of Scotland.
"By raising awareness of these jobs and
encouraging young people to consider them,
we are aiming to ensure that the hundreds
of Scottish companies involved in renewable
energy have access to a suitably skilled
MORE INFO www.careers-scotland.org.uk www.thepathisgreen.co.uk
MAKING THE TURBINES
The job of wind turbine engineer would
involve designing, making and maintaining
components for wind turbines. These could
be small micro-turbines for homes, those
destined to be built on land, or the huge
turbines for use offshore. Most wind turbine
engineers will have trained as mechanical
or electrical engineers, and will apply
their knowledge of fluid and solid mechanics,
hydraulics, thermodynamic and materials.
They will earn between GBP 27,500 and GBP
40,500 a year. An engineering degree or
other engineering qualification would be
ANALYSING THE WEATHER
The job of wind analyst is crucial in helping
to find suitable sites for wind farms.
Wind analysts examine weather data to estimate
the projected wind output at a particular
site, and use that to predict how much energy
could be produced there by a wind farm.
They are usually experienced meteorologists,
or engineers with a meteorological or fluid
Senior wind analysts can earn up to GBP
40,000. A degree in meteorology, maths or
physics would be required.
Biomass development officers are responsible
for the promotion and development of this
alternative fuel market. This can involve
preparing guidance materials, organising
events or setting up advice services. A
biomass development officer can expect to
earn about GBP 25,000 a year.
SURVEYING THE OCEAN
There will be a growing demand for marine
surveyors. The data they gather can be used
to help build structures such as wind farms
and wave energy machines. A degree in marine
science, oceanogrophy, geology or similar
would be expected, and the job will pay
up to GBP 39,500 a year.
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