The pandemic recovery outlook for Greentech growth is different relying on countries.
The impact of COVID-19 has brought severe economic loss across industries. It has put businesses of all sizes at standstill, signaling a recession much greater than the last economic crisis. The pandemic impact in the Greentech landscape is not an exception as it is witnessing its fair share loss as a result of factory shutdowns, lower energy consumption from travel and shelter-in-place policies. Conversely, the last couple of months have seen a major layoff; nearly 600,000 clean energy jobs have been lost.
According to Labor Department data, E2, the American Council on Renewable Energy (ACORE), E4TheFuture, and BW Research Partnership, 447,200 clean energy jobs were lost in April, while 594,300 were lost since the pandemic began. To recover from this crisis, Greentech investments can be helpful for society and long-term economic outcomes of climate change. Governments must rethink their economic recovery plans by putting green technology investments at the heart to cope with the COVID-19 crisis.
Two months back in June, World Bank Maldives Development Update: In Stormy Seas report noted that with increased investments in renewables, Maldives can seize green energy opportunities, contribute to post-pandemic economic recovery and create more jobs in the country.
Today, many power and energy companies are voluntarily moving from fossil fuels to renewable energy. But experts consider whether they delay this transition owing to the plunging price of natural gas and the current administrations’ rollback of several policies that support renewable energy. However, as many projects already underway, concerns about the future may interrupt some utilities’ plans to fuel their renewable energy portfolios. Besides, many economies have committed to introducing clean energy alternatives, so in the coming years, we can expect the installations of solar and wind panels. But due to COVID-19 induced supply shortages and shelter-in-place policies, all plans may see delays.
EU Green Recovery Pledge
In the midst of COVID-19, the European Commission has pledged a mammoth green recovery package to deal with climate emergency. The commission seeks to pour money into emissions-busting sectors. €91 billion a year for home energy efficiency and green heating, €25 billion of renewable energy, and €20 billion for clean cars over two years. Along with this, the EU also pledged for 2 million charging points in the next five years, while up to €60 billion will go to zero-emissions trains and the production of 1m tonnes of clean hydrogen is planned.
On the other side, the EU’s plan seeks to generate at least a million green jobs, with workers in polluting industries helped into new roles. Increasing the Just Transition Fund over fivefold to €40 billion will lessen the risk of protests against green measures, especially in states with the heaviest coal use such as Poland, Germany and Romania, which will be among the biggest recipients. This is politically necessary, despite investment in the green economy already being a no-brainer.