How many jobs will be lost in the EU as a consequence of climate change?

The objective of this project was to fill out gaps regarding the implications of climate change adaptation on EU employment and skills. As part of the future mainstreaming of climate change adaptation in EU policies, the results of this study also identified EU employment and social policies which could promote the transition to a climate resilient EU economy, including the provision of adequate skills.

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Economic implications of climate change adaptation. Source: own analysis.

Some of the key findings of the research include:

  • Approximately 410 thousand jobs will be lost by 2050 due to climate change if no further adaptation is taking place. In the short-run, up to 2020, the total number of lost jobs would be around 240 thousand.
  • Climate change will affect labour markets in the European regions differently depending on their core economic sectors and climatic conditions. Manufacturing, public utilities, retail and tourism are the sectors with the largest negative climate change impacts.
  • Prediction scenarios expect an increase of between 50,000 and 200,000 jobs by 2020 due to increased adaptation-related expenditures.
  • Occupations particularly in the construction and consulting/ engineering sector will benefit the most from climate change adaptation investments.