22 May 2020, 14:02
Benjamin Wehrmann

Number of German energy workers rises by more than 10,000 in a decade

Clean Energy Wire

The number of people employed in Germany's energy industry has grown by more than 10,000 from 2009 to 2019, with the solid increase partly spurred by the renewable energy sector, the German Association of Energy and Water Industries (BDEW) has said. About 192,500 jobs in the energy industry existed in 2019, up from about 181,000 in 2009. BDEW head Kerstin Andreae stressed that the importance of these jobs has proven itself during the coronavirus crisis, during which energy workers helped to keep the country running "under difficult circumstances." At the same time, energy workers have been keeping Germany's energy transition on track "through innovative ideas and by implementing it on site," the energy industry lobby group head said.
In an open letter to the government, wind power industry association WAB said the energy transition could help bring back jobs lost due to the coronavirus pandemic. The continued expansion of on- and offshore wind power together with the budding hydrogen industry, in line with the EU's Green Deal, would make Germany less dependent on energy imports and offer considerable growth opportunities, especially for small and medium-sized companies. The WAB called on the government to formulate a "long-term roadmap for the energy transition" that would help companies prepare for fully exploiting the potential of hydrogen production with renewable energy sources.

A study by Germany's Institute for Employment Research (IAB) in January 2020 found that Germany's climate package will create more jobs than a business-as-usual scenario while it is overall expected to have a slightly negative effect on economic growth. However, the outlook on jobs in the automotive industry is more negative in a sector that is also undergoing a radical shift to electric mobility. According to government advisers of the National Platform on Future Mobility, the self-reliance of Germany's carmakers for producing electric vehicles has to increase substantially over the next years if massive job losses in one of the country's most important industries are to be avoided.

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