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Green Business in India

Role of Indian workforce in the transition to Green Economy.

Contributions by: Mr. Kolluru Krishan, Industrialist and Former Chairman, Skill Council for Green Jobs, New Delhi

Since the inception of Sustainable Development Goals

From the mid-20th Century, there has been recognition of the need to address issues of Environmental degradation caused by Economic development, as well as the rising socio-economic inequities  between developed and developing nations, with Climate Change flagged as concern at Rio in 1992. 

It’s only in 2015 that the UN adopted the Sustainable Development Goals, articulated as 17 SDGs, recognizing the need for integrated implementation and that development must balance social, economic and environmental sustainability.

This has given rise to a number of climate action policies, initiatives by all stakeholders. With the world moving towards accelerating SDG efforts in recent times, various Skill Councils, Academies, concepts such as green-skilling and green jobs have been established and gaining attention. Read ahead on the pioneers in the field.

Work of Sector Council for Green Jobs

Sector Council for Green Jobs (SCGJ) has trained over 500,000 candidates & implemented projects for World Bank, GIZ, FCDO, UNDP as well conducted multi-lingual training, in over 40 African countries, on behalf of International Solar Alliance. Recently, SCGJ signed an agreement with the German Solar Industry Association, BSW (Bundesverband Solarwirtschaft) to help integrate Indian workers into the German solar industry.

“SCGJ, through its Bangalore Centre of Excellence, is focusing on the above and looks forward to a widespread implementation in collaboration with CSD/GSA”

India’s Green Business sector

India is set to become a global leader in the transition to green economy, through  its national missions, its NDC’s with enhanced ambitions during COP26 and Long Term Low Emissions Development Strategies (LT-LEDS) during COP27 as well as in the Delhi Declaration during its presidency in the G20 Summit. 

An approach, “Skills Gap Analysis”, establishing National Occupation Standards and developing training modules across all levels of activity performers/ managers was put forth and used. 

However, this approach addressed, primarily, the organised workforce, which constitutes only 10.6% of the total working age population of 900 million in 2020, as per India Economic survey 2021-22. Industry 4.0, evolving from automation to robotics to AI/ML, is reducing demand for traditional skilled workers & eliminating the need for semi-skilled workers. A large portion of the working age population are unemployed or underemployed, dependent on welfare schemes and employment guarantee schemes. Definitely, an unstable socio-economic scenario for India with 2030 working age population projected as 1 billion. Hence, the criticality to focus on the availability of the “Indian Workforce” and its potential deployment in the Green Economy.

Pathway to decarbonization

Green Economy would encompass multiple pathways under LT-LEDS as well as for compliance with SEBI mandated BRSR. These encompass deep decarbonization of Energy, Transport, Industry, Buildings and Agriculture, including Supply Chain, which will spawn many new green businesses & create millions of green jobs.

Furthermore, transition to Green Economy requires, apart from Policy/ Technology/ Finance, active engagement with the community, to embed green values and get green practices & processes adopted voluntarily, including MSME’s. Such engagement must extend to High Schools, Polytechnics & Colleges, to create awareness of green jobs/ entrepreneurial opportunities, along with correlated education.

Green Skills Academy

Green Skills Academy (GSA) was established in the year 2017, in affiliation with National Skills Development Corporation (NSDC) and Skill Council for Green Jobs under the Ministry of Skill Development, Government of India as well as Kaushalkar. 

It is a capacity building initiative by Centre for Sustainable Development (CSD), Bengaluru, set up with the intention of imparting skills required for developing India’s green economy. The academy aims to provide knowledge and training on select green technologies that will both enable a new workforce and upgrade skills of existing workforce. 


Since its inception, GSA has achieved to 

  • Train 5000+ individuals within Bengaluru with NSDC certification 
  • Build a network of passionate-about-sustainability individuals 
  • Develop effective and industry specific curricula for courses in alignment with the NSQF framework.
  • Launch and run 15+ Flagship courses of the green sector, to name a few, Sewage Treatment Plant Technician/Operator, Solar Rooftop PV grid engineer, Sustainable Waste Management, Green Buildings – Design and Construction, Sustainable Agriculture, etc. 

Learn more about our works at

March 14, 2024

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