Eurofound studyFit for 55 climate package: Impact on EU employment by 2030

Key messages

The EU’s Fit for 55 climate package of legislation is estimated to lead to a net creation of 204,000 jobs in the EU in addition to the baseline employment growth of 6.7 million net new jobs over the 2019–2030 period. These very modest net gains are in line with most existing estimates of employment impacts of decarbonisation policies in the EU.

Even though overall employment forecasts for 2030 arising from Fit for 55 are mildly positive, the absolute employment impacts of Fit for 55 policies are higher in the regions negatively affected – for example in Polish and Romanian regions with a relatively high share of employment in mining or extractive sectors – while positive employment impacts are more dispersed across other regions. This supports the rationale of a region-focused funding of supporting measures as in the territorial just transition plans.

The construction sector is likely to be the main sector benefitting from additional labour demand due to the Fit for 55 package. Gains will result from energy efficiency improvements and the building of additional renewable energy capacity.

While employment overall is forecast to upgrade on a 2030 horizon, the small boost to employment forecast for Fit for 55 is set to occur in mid-paid and mid-low paid jobs that do not require tertiary qualifications.

Forecasts of employment impacts are sensitive to the details of policy implementation. Greater gains in both output and employment may potentially arise where carbon revenues are recycled, earmarked and returned to reduce labour taxes.