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Opportunity Issue 102

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Opportunity magazine is a niche business-to-business publication that explores various investment opportunities within Southern Africa’s economic sectors. The publication is endorsed by the South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SACCI).

GREEN JOBS C40 Cities

GREEN JOBS C40 Cities launches research on green jobs in South Africa Data shows how South African cities can play a vital role in delivering green jobs and an equitable and sustainable recovery from the pandemic. Children in KwaZulu-Natal were given access to digital cameras to record what they understood by climate and training to develop their photographic skills. The 48 participants were encouraged to expand on their thoughts, which were then published in a Climate Change Booklet. Credit: C40 Knowledge Hub Ambitious urban climate action could create and support over 1.8-million green jobs in South Africa by 2030. The jobs would be part of a green and just recovery from Covid-19, according to the research from C40 Cities, a global network of mayors taking urgent action to confront the climate crisis. Of those jobs, nearly 1.1-million would be across the buildings, power and sustainable transport sectors, and almost 674 000 of those jobs – accounting for approximately 58% of all jobs – can be generated and supported locally within cities. According to the report, investing in adaptation and nature-based solutions to tackle extreme weather events such as floods and droughts can produce an additional 705 000 sustainable jobs across the country. Alongside the research, national polling commissioned by C40 found that two-thirds of South Africans strongly support using national government funds to invest in green jobs in cities. The report identified improving the energy efficiency of existing and new homes, schools and workplaces as having the most significant job-creation opportunity. This has the potential to create more than 900 000 jobs, equivalent to 78% of the jobs created from climate action in the buildings, energy and transport sectors. These urban actions would lead to significant emissions reduction that would surpass the South African 2030 climate target, making higher ambition to align with the Paris Agreement possible for South Africa. Improving lives Most significantly, creating green jobs will have a ripple effect across people's lives, from ensuring comfortable homes, to cleaning up the air we all breathe and making cities more resilient to future extreme weather events. The research indicates the need to implement workforce development, training and just transition policies to guarantee that new jobs are truly inclusive and accessible to those who need them the most, including women, youth and previously-disadvantaged individuals, as this will not happen automatically. For example, female representation in future jobs is estimated at 32%, showing there is an opportunity to bolster equity as these jobs are created. “The transition to a green economy must be just, inclusive and equitable,” says Dr Mpho Phalatse, Executive Mayor of Johannesburg and C40 Vice Chair. “Cities are at the forefront 64 | www.opportunityonline.co.za

GREEN JOBS Credit: Fermin Rodriguez Penelas on Unsplash The C40 World Mayors Summit, the organisation’s triennial climate action conference organised in partnership with a C40 member city, is to be hosted by the City of Buenos Aires from 19 to 21 October 2022. The 96 cities that make up C40 constitute 20% of the global economy. of the fight against poverty, inequality and unemployment. Cities are also at the forefront of the climate emergency. We must tackle these challenges together. Green jobs can help to alleviate poverty while helping to build clean, healthy, sustainable and resilient communities. We must ensure that green jobs go to those who need them the most, marginalised communities, women and the youth. Cities are already attracting investment and creating thousands of green job opportunities. With the support of national government and the private sector, we can go even further.” The report also highlights that significant investment from public and private sources is needed for cities to realise their full potential in terms of job creation, emissions reduction and building resilience, and that the gains from this investment will far outweigh the cost. Investments of a similar magnitude would be required under a business-as-usual recovery that wouldn’t provide the same benefits across people’s lives (such as more energy-efficient houses, cleaner air, better public-transport systems and more resilient cities) or put the country on track to meet climate targets. This means that it is not a matter of additional investments, but more to ensure that investment moves from carbon-intensive projects to low-carbon ones supporting a green and just recovery for everyone. "The research not only shows the potential for green job creation in South Africa, but also symbolises the potential for other African countries to harness the power of cities to unlock green jobs and realise a just transition," notes Hastings Chikoko, Regional Director for Africa at C40. Time is of the essence. A delay of five years in the climate actions outlined in the research will reduce the emissions reduction and job creation potential by 2030 by one-third. As Mayor Mxolisi Kaunda of Durban says, “This year, the city of Durban will host a youth employment expo in recognition of the urgent need to create jobs and invest in skills development for young people. As mayor of this city, I am committed to growing a sustainable, equitable and inclusive economy. “The concept of green jobs is not only about saving the environment. This concept goes hand in hand in supporting my city’s vision for social justice by benefiting disadvantaged communities, women and the youth. “These are the same communities prone to flooding and in need of support to become more resilient. It is critical therefore that green jobs are designed to offer secure employment, safe working conditions and fair remuneration with the end goal to support the local economy, improve infrastructure and service delivery and enhance the quality of life for all residents.” About C40 Cities C40 Cities is a global network of mayors taking urgent action to confront the climate crisis and create a future where everyone can thrive. Mayors of C40 cities are on the leading edge of climate action and are deploying a science-based and collaborative approach to help the world limit global temperatures to 1.5°C and build healthy, equitable and resilient communities. C40 Cities has been in Africa since 2013 and is supporting cities in Africa to implement transformative low-carbon and climate-resilient actions. C40 has 13 city members in Africa: Abidjan, Accra, Addis Ababa, Cape Town, Dakar, Dar es Salaam, Durban, Ekurhuleni, Freetown, Johannesburg, Lagos, Nairobi and Tshwane. C40 is providing the member cities Africa the relevant technical support they need to effectively Creating address climate change. This is done through a wide range of policy support, technical assistance and local green political engagement. C40 has established 17 thematic networks jobs under in six South areas of action. Through these networks, African cities are able to share experiences and best practice with other C40 cities globally. 1 www.opportunityonline.co.za | 63

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