UN Green Economy Report: Millions Of Jobs Can Be Created Protecting Environment

05/31/2012 08:36 EDT | Updated 05/31/2012 08:36 EDT

GENEVA (AP) -- The U.N. agencies for labour and environment say nations can achieve a net gain of 15 million to 60 million jobs over the next two decades by taking better care of the planet.

A study released Thursday by the U.N.'s International Labor Organization and Environment Program says some jobs would inevitably be lost by switching to a "greener'' economy, but net gains of 0.5 per cent to 2 per cent of total global employment are possible mainly through more renewable and efficient energy use, particularly in construction.

Most of the net employment gains are expected in agriculture, forestry, fishing, energy, manufacturing, recycling, building and transportation.

ILO Director-General Juan Somavia said the study -- meant to influence international policy-makers -- shows "we don't have to choose between protecting the environment and creating jobs.''


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