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The evolution of green jobs in Scotland : a hybrid approach

Connolly, Kevin and Allan, Grant J and McIntyre, Stuart G (2016) The evolution of green jobs in Scotland : a hybrid approach. Energy Policy, 88. pp. 355-360. ISSN 0301-4215

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Abstract

In support of its ambitious target to reduce CO2 emissions the Scottish Government is aiming to have the equivalent of 100% of Scottish electricity consumption generated from renewable sources by 2020. This is, at least in part, motivated by an expectation of subsequent employment growth in low carbon and renewable energy technologies; however there is no official data source to track employment in these areas. This has led to a variety of definitions, methodologies and alternative estimates being produced. Building on a recent study (Bishop et al, 2013) we develop a "hybrid" approach which combines the detail of "bottom-up" surveys with "top-down" trend data to produce estimates on employment in Low Carbon Environmental Goods and Services (LCEGS). We demonstrate this methodology to produce estimates for such employment in Scotland between 2004 and 2012. Our approach shows how survey and official sources can combine to produce a more timely measure of employment in LCEGS activities, assisting policymakers in tracking, consistently, developments. Applying our approach, we find that over this period employment in LCEGS in Scotland grew, but that this was more volatile than aggregate employment, and in particular that employment in this sector was particularly badly hit during the great recession.