Round table presents measures to counter lack of skilled labour

Focus on workers in climate and energy sector needed for climate protection and energy transition
28 November 2022
Chamber of Commerce in Hamburg

The Ministry for the Environment and the Chamber of Skilled Crafts in Hamburg have presented measures to counteract the lack of skilled workers in the energy sector in the wake of round table talks underway since February 2022, a press release said Wednesday (November 23, 2022). Germany lacks some 190,000 skilled workers in climate-related trades nationwide, according to the German Confederation of Skilled Crafts. Germany needs around 360,000 more jobs by 2030 to achieve for climate neutrality, a survey by the Society for Economic Structure Research has found.

Campaign, grants and further training

The planned measures include a two-year adverting campaign from 2023 highlighting professions in the climate sector and targeting mainly young people, which will be run by the Chamber of Skilled Crafts and the Ministry for the Environment. Apprentices over 25 years will receive grants as part of a pilot project to incentivise training. Students in related courses of study will be hired for part-time jobs and internships to boost career entries in the energy sector. Training courses for instructors in the air-conditioning trade will be held to attract school pupils to the sector. Germany's Employment Agency will set up a dedicated career counselling network. 

Rising demand for renewable energies and skilled labour 

"We face a variety of challenges to ensure that the energy transition succeeds swiftly and to become independent of fossil fuels," said Jens Kerstan, Senator for the Environment. Both the demand for renewable energies is increasing and the need for skilled workers in climate-related trades: "All those keen on installing solar systems on the roof or updating the heating system must expect long waiting times at present," he pointed out.

Future of round table 

Various stakeholders in science, business and politics as well as universities, guilds and crafts companies had taken part in the round table talks. "The fact that politics and practice sat down together at the same table is a first, good step," said Hjalmar Stemmann, President of the Chamber of Skilled Crafts in Hamburg. However, the requirements for trades people in the climate sector are expected to increase, he noted, adding: "Now it is important to put the jointly developed measures into practice swiftly and to continue the committee's important work in the coming years." The round table will meet again in 2023.

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