Green skills for sustainable world

Ranjan K Baruah
All of us want development and all Governments focus on development. There are many skill training programmes to train young people so that they can get decent jobs or become self-employed. We must know that the transition to a low-carbon, resource-efficient economy requires systemic changes that will result not only in new products and services but also in changes in production processes and business models.
It means we have to focus more on greening the training or promoting green skills amongst young people. This greening of the economy will inevitably change the skills required and the tasks involved in many of the existing occupations.
We must know that green skills are those that enable the environmental sustainability of economic activities. Skill Council for Green Jobs is one of the most recently launched initiatives of the Government of India aligned to the National Skill Development Mission. It is promoted by the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) and Confederation of Indian Industry (CII). We are aware that most skill training programmes or vocational training programmes focus on mecha- nical/technical skills rather than ‘green’ skills. Green skills are important as it contributes towards sustaina- bility or sustainable development.
In line with the Skill India Mission of Hon’ble Prime Minister, Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change (MoEF&CC) utilizing the vast network and expertise of ENVIS Hubs/RPs, has taken up an initiative for skill development in the environment and forest sector to enable India's youth to get gainful employment and/or self-employment, called the Green Skill Development Programme (GSDP).
Few courses related to green skill training includes:  
Value addition and Marketing of Non Timber Forest Products (NTFPs) : Lantana Furniture and Crafts; Value addition and Marketing of NTFPs (Plant Origin): Coconut Shells & Fibre Handicrafts; Value addition and Marketing of NTFPs (Plant Origin): Bamboo Crafts; Value addition and Marketing of NTFPs (Plant Origin): NTFP Products / Medicinal Plants; Bird Identification and basic ornithology; Value addition and Marketing of NTFPs (Animal Origin) : Wild Bee Keeping & Processing; Sustain and Enhance Technical Knowledge in Solar Energy Systems; Propagation and Management of Bamboo; Plantation Techniques and Utilization of Renewable Energy in Arid Zone; Forest Entomology & Pest Control; Valuation of Ecosystem Services and Green GDP; Water Budgeting & Auditing; Bird Migration and Migration study techniques; Pollution Monitors : Air and Water Pollution; Laboratory Technicians/ Technical Assistants for energy efficiency, star labelling and other electrical testing for environmental criteria; Advance Course in Para taxonomy including Peoples Biodiversity Register (PBR); Wildlife Management using Geospatial Techniques; Plant Tissue Culture Techniques and its Applications; Waste Management : (Solid Waste, Biomedical Waste, Plastic Waste, E-Waste, Construction and Demolition Waste); Laboratory Assistant for Eco Friendly Food testing Laboratory, etc .
The candidates completing the Course(s) may be employed gainfully in the zoos/wildlife sanctuaries/national parks/biosphere reserves/ Botanical Gardens/Nurseries/wetland sites/State Bio-diversity Boards/Biodiversity Management Committees/Wildlife Crime Control Bureau; industries (involved in production/ manufacturing of green products, as ETP operator); tourism (as Nature/Eco-tourist Guides), agriculture (as organic farmers/ green practitioners), education & research sectors as well as engage in waste management (in Municipal Corporations/ Councils/Urban Local bodies to advise on how to improve sewage, sanitation, land use services/ tackle pollution), water management, construction related areas, etc. Some of the courses enable the candidates to become self- employed.
There is no doubt that green jobs are decent jobs that contribute to preserving or restoring the environment, be they in traditional sectors such as manufacturing and construction, or in new, emerging green sectors such as renewable energy and energy efficiency.
This year’s International Youth Day which is observed around the world on 12th August is focusing on green skills for a sustainable world. Green skilling means our commitment towards the planet and lets contribute towards the earth by enhancing green skills.
(Ranjan K Baruah is a career mentor and skill trainer and currently Adviser of Skill Employment and Entrepreneurship Department of BTR, Kokrajhar and can be reached at 8473943734 or [email protected])