Create new green jobs in areas with greatest unemployment

Green Alliance research has found significant potential for new green jobs in areas with the greatest challenges to the local labour market.

The research from the think tank finds more than 16,000 new jobs can be created through coastal restoration, tree planting and urban green spaces across areas with the greatest employment challenges, particularly in the ‘Red Wall’, with more green jobs across Britain.

It argues that investment and raised ambition in nature restoration could create at least 16,000 new jobs across the 126 British constituencies facing the most significant employment challenges coming out of the pandemic. Many of these constituencies are to be found in areas often identified as the Red Wall, and include County Durham, Copeland, Wolverhampton and Ashfield.

The research found further opportunities for creating green jobs across Britain. Coastal communities with potential for seagrass planting, such as the Isle of Wight, have a higher proportion of people on furlough and more challenging employment prospects, indicating investment in these jobs could boost nature and the local economy post-pandemic.

Two thirds of the best land for tree planting can be found in constituencies with higher than average labour market challenges, with 112,000 hectares of this land in Red Wall areas.

Patrick Begg, the National Trust’s Outdoors and Natural Resources Director, said: "The pandemic has had a devastating impact on so many people's lives across society. During this period, those fortunate enough to have access to green space have been taking comfort from nature and areas of beauty close to home. We are also seeing the environment and our relationship with nature rocketing up the political and media agenda.
“A greener recovery which increases access to nature is within our reach. One that offers massive social and environmental benefits as well as economic growth, but also boosts people's health and well-being. This important research shows that by investing in projects that make a greener recovery a priority, the Government could generate green jobs for the communities that need them most. This would accelerate the journey we are on to a more prosperous future for people and planet."

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