Aug 12, 2013 - A new report shows that the European wind power sector’s rapid expansion is bringing a major challenge -- already there is a shortage of 7,000 skilled workers per year and the figure may reach 15,000 by 2030.
A survey by the European Wind Energy Technology Platform (TPWind) showed that 78% of the polled companies find it "difficult or very difficult to find suitably trained staff" at present. TPWind’s recent report, based on research by green energy consultancy GL Garrad Hassan, calls for increased cooperation between the wind energy sector and academia to help fill the skills gap.
Wind power capacity in Europe jumped from 13 GW in 2000 to over 100 GW of 2012 and it has been really hard for skills development to keep up. According to the "Workers wanted: The EU wind energy sector skills gap" report the sector will need close to 50,000 additional trained workers by 2030, with the operations and maintenance (O&M) segment presenting the greatest source of new jobs and demand for skilled employees.
The report proposes several solutions to the problem -- a framework to coordinate the cooperation between the wind industry and academia; the addition of industry experience into training and education; higher emphasis on O&M training; and targeted courses within the industry on science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).
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