According to the management consultancy Deloitte, more than 800 million jobs worldwide are affected by climate change and the energy transition – a quarter of today’s workforce.

“The job risk is greatest in Asia-Pacific and Africa, as is the potential for additional jobs,” says the Deloitte study, which was due to be presented at the UN Climate Change Conference in Sharm el-Sheikh.

Jobs in agriculture, energy, mining, industry, transport and construction are particularly affected. Some of these sectors are facing upheaval due to high CO2 emissions, others, such as agriculture, are threatened by floods, heat or storms, said Deloitte climate expert Bernhard Lorentz. In Asia-Pacific and Africa, more than 40 percent of the workforce is employed in vulnerable industries.

“By actively shaping the transformation, decarbonization could create more than 300 million additional jobs by 2050,” said Lorentz, “of which 21 million in Europe, 180 million in Asia-Pacific, 75 million in Africa and 26 million in the Americas.” The “vulnerable regions” would have to invest especially in the development of “a green workforce”. A faster, planned transition to a net-zero economy could ensure fairer wages and better working conditions around the world.

Deloitte partner Maren Hauptmann said: “The key is investing in skills development – from school and university education to in-company training and development. This must be a top priority for politicians and companies.”