About 3.7 million new jobs will be created across Australia by 2030 if the government acts now to shift from a pollution dependent economy to a cleaner economy, a new report from the Australian Council of Trade Unions says.

Creating Jobs – Cutting Pollution: the roadmap for a cleaner, stronger economy, released by the ACTU and the Australian Conservation Foundation, shows that Australian households will be 10 per cent better off by 2030 if the government implements policies that will cut greenhouse pollution by 25 per cent.

The report states that the economy and living standards will suffer if the government fails to implement policies that establish a price on pollution and increase energy efficiency, renewable energy investment and cleaner transport.

ACTU President Sharan Burrow said the extra jobs that would be created were not just “green collar” jobs, but new jobs in traditional industries such as agriculture, mining, manufacturing and the services sector.

“This report shows regional areas, even those which produce coal and generate electricity, will have more jobs if we take strong action to cut pollution, but only if we act now.

“Australia’s government and business leaders face a simple choice: invest and innovate now to secure our long-term future or pay the price in extra economic costs, job losses and an increasingly damaged environment if we don’t act.”

ACF executive director Don Henry said government policies were holding back Australia’s transition to a cleaner economy.

“In this election year Australians want our leaders to show they have got a serious plan to shift to us a cleaner economy with new industries and better jobs.”

The Greens have welcomed the report, saying that it backs up their proposed amendments to the CPRS and the carbon levy.

“The modeling in this report strongly backs up our moves in the Senate to make sure that Australian workers get the benefit of climate action,” said Australian Greens Deputy Leader, Senator Christine Milne.

“Transforming our economy for zero emissions is clearly a massive task which will create hundreds of thousands of jobs and billions of dollars in investment.

“Instead of delaying action, protecting polluters and sending money offshore, as the CPRS did, we should be embracing the change and helping those in the polluting industries to move into the sunshine industries that will boom with strong climate action.”

The complete report can be viewed here

The technical report can be viewed here