The world of work is intimately connected with the natural environment. Some 1.2 billion jobs in sectors such as farming, fisheries, forestry and tourism are dependent on the effective management and sustainability of healthy ecosystems. Half of the world's GDP is, to a greater or lesser degree, dependent on nature. Climate change and other forms of environmental degradation therefore have negative impacts not only on ecosystems, but also on jobs, economies, and livelihoods. Millions of people are already experiencing higher temperatures and extreme weather events, such as heat waves, droughts and increased flooding, which are putting food security, water supply and jobs at risk. Vulnerable groups, especially in developing countries, will suffer the most from the changing weather patterns, not only because they are more exposed to climate-related impacts, but also because they have less access to social and financial support, including social protection. A just transition is not only about the transition of the workforce, for example from fossil fuel industries to renewable energy, but it is equally about supporting developing countries and the most vulnerable to adapt their economies, labour markets and infrastructure to the effects of climate change and environmental problems. A major role in local adaptation to climate change is played by green works, i.e. physical activities for the development and maintenance of infrastructure, ecosystems or community assets that have an overall positive environmental impact. Green works, such as soil conservation, reforestation and flood protection, are labour intensive and have the potential to create employment for vulnerable groups, while contributing to environmental rehabilitation and improvement. This course provides an interactive e-learning opportunity for exploring how to effectively design and implement green works initiatives in the transition to a greener and more resilient society. By undertaking a review of different approaches, examples and best practices, participants will learn how to identify and develop interventions that reduce the future impact of climate change, while providing employment opportunities and enhancing the productive capacity of ecosystems. The course will focus on the development of green works using a local resource-based approach, i.e. combining the use of local participation in planning with the use of locally available skills, technology, and materials.
The course is intended for professionals involved in climate change adapatation and designing and implementing local, sectoral, national and global strategies for the transition to greener economies. It specifically targets government officials operating at the local, provincial and national levels; ILO and UN staff and development practitioners; donor organizations which are working or would like to work on climate change adaptation and just transition; public investment and employment policy advisors; research and education institutions.