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Global efforts to mitigate climate change are ramping up, with a rising numbers of countries, companies and financiers taking action to tackle climate change. At the same time, climate changes, such as temperature and weather changes, are increasing, with dramatic impacts on populations. These are having material impacts on the economy and society. In the short term, dealing with this transition has materialised primarily in a focus on the decarbonisation of the energy systems. In the medium to long term, this will extend to virtually all sectors and segments of society.

In this context, the just transition agenda has taken centre stage. It aims to lower the risks faced by the most affected and vulnerable stakeholders, such as working people, small businesses and low-income communities, while providing an opportunity to maximise the development of new opportunities and redress historical injustices.

Establishing a credible fact base is paramount for designing and implementing an evidence-based just transition. To allow easy access to a growing body of work on just transition, TIPS has curated relevant content into an open knowledge portal. This provides short summaries as well as key findings and recommendations from a diversity of reports, strategies, videos and podcasts. The knowledge portal focuses on South Africa but will be extended to other areas in the future.

The portal is a living initiative. Should you know of additional resources which could be added or spot any errors, please contact Lerato Monaisa at lerato@tips.org.za

Featured material

Just transitions and the green economy - navigating the fault lines

SUMMARY: The paper frames the Just Transition from a moral and business perspective. It assesses how much responsibility companies and organisations should have for the impact their clients have on

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National employment vulnerability assessment: analysis of potential climate change-related impacts and vulnerable groups

SUMMARY: The report provides a detailed analysis of the capacity of vulnerable communities, workers and businesses to adjust to climate change-related impacts in the coal, metals, transport-based petroleum, agricultural value

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Down to zero: The politics of Just Transition

SUMMARY: This book looks at the anticipated impact of climate change and the experiences of millions of people who are facing a climate disaster, focusing on Southern and South Africa.

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Unlocking a just energy transition for SA

SUMMARY: Professor Mark Swilling discusses the global renewable energy revolution, the public sector’s role in investment in renewables and how renewable energy has the potential to change social politics and

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Future skills and job creation through renewable energy in South Africa: Assessing the co-benefits of decarbonising the power sector

  • Institution / Author: CSIR, Energy Systems Analysis, Economics and Policy Group; IASS (Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies); IET (International Energy Transition); and COBENEFITS [Hartley, F., Okunlola, A., Jacobs, D., Ntuli, N., Fourie, R., Borbonus, S., Nagel, L., Helgenberger, S., Burton, J., Cunliffe, G., McCall, B., Caetano, T., Chiloane, L.]
  • Year: 2019
  • Sectoral focus: Coal, Electricity, Energy
  • Thematic focus: Policy interventions / recommendations, Project identification / promotion, Skills development
  • Type of analysis: Modelling, Stakeholder engagement
  • Type of document: Research report

SUMMARY: The study analyses the employment impacts of different plans for expanding electricity generation in South Africa’s power sector. The report assesses the skill attainment levels required for energy transition, and the potential for workers to transfer from the coal sector to the emerging renewable energy sector. Four scenarios, which consider two timelines, are presented. The short-term 2030 timeline is based on the expected electricity generation mix to meet the rising demand in the country and which is aligned with the National Development Plan 2030. The long-term timeline is based on electricity generation mix predicted to meet the projected growth in energy demand up to 2050, and considers the predicted decommissioning timeline of coal power plants.

KEY FINDING / RECOMMENDATIONS: The study finds among other things that increasing the share of renewables can raise employment by 40 % (580 000 job years) in the period 2018 to 2030; with the shift from IRP 2016 to IRP 2018 an additional 1.3 million jobs are created economy-wide by 2050, 17% in the power sector by 2050; most job creation in renewable power generation is within the high-skilled labour group (educational attainment level above Grade-12), although employment is also created in other skill groups; and declining global demand for coal is the largest impact factor for coal mining employment.

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