Labor market tightness hindering energy transition: ABN Amro
The current labor market shortage is a stumbling block for the energy challenges facing the Netherlands, according to ABN Amro. More than a third of the vacancies related to sustainable energy sources, like wind and solar power, are unfilled. This includes a lack of installation personnel who can handle heat pumps and solar panels. In addition, there are technicians needed for roofing, plumbing, heating, and gas and water pipe fitting.
The shortage on the labor market has never been this great, according to the bank. There are no workers available for more than one-fifth of all vacancies. The bank also looks at professional preferences and travel distance. In the professions that connect to the energy transition, almost no personnel can be found for 36 percent of the vacancies.
Initiatives must be taken to increase the supply of personnel, the bank said. ABN Amro has used Groningen as an example, where social welfare recipients can be trained to install solar panels via the benefits agency, UWV, within three months. Techniek Nederland, the business association of technical services providers, installation companies, and the technical retail sector, has also given clarity to all local government plans and educational options.
Climate scientists have repeatedly affirmed that greenhouse gas emissions must be cut "immediately and severely" to limit global warming to a maximum of 1.5 degrees by 2050, when compared to the second half of the 19th century. Measures are needed in several sectors to prevent the "damaging effects" of global warming, such as extreme heat, flooding, and prolonged periods of drought.
In the coalition agreement, a climate and transition fund of 35 billion euros was announced. This money should be used in part to aid the construction of infrastructure for clean energy sources, where staff shortages stand in the way of green energy plans.
Reporting by ANP