Irish professionals will need to re-tool and upskill to meet the demands of Ireland’s transition to a more carbon-efficient and Circular Economy. A circular economy will require a range of skills including trade and craft skills, such as upholstery, cabinet making, sewing and general repairs, eco-design, green procurement, supply chain management, and remanufacturing. Many of these skills have gone into decline so their return would see the creation of new jobs.
Community Reuse Network Ireland (CRNI) is concerned about the current lack of these skills in the labour market and the impact this has on its practitioner members. Future Jobs and Skills for a Circular Economy presents an interactive opportunity to explore this challenge, alongside education, environmental and policy experts. The half-day event will highlight gaps in our jobs and skills base required for prevention, reuse and repair in Ireland and what can be done about it.
Experts will include Duncan Stewart, architect and producer/presenter of Eco-Eye, and representatives from the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment; Green Alliance; Nevin Economic Research Institute, Wisetek, CRNI Members the Rediscovery Centre and Recycle IT, and more.
The event is a collaboration between the Eastern-Midlands Waste Management Region, Chartered Institution of Wastes Management Ireland Centre, Community Reuse Network Ireland (CRNI), Athlone Institute of Technology and Regional Skills Midlands. It is taking place as part of National Reuse Month, which presents opportunities for everyone throughout the country to take climate action by learning new repair and reuse skills.
“As we move towards a circular economy, it’s not enough to focus on business opportunities and the changes businesses need to make. It is vitally important that we identify the types of jobs that will emerge and that we begin to build the required skills in rural areas and small towns, so that the transition to a circular economy is a just transition that benefits communities all over Ireland,” says Joanne Rourke, Regional Resource Efficiency Officer for the Eastern Midlands Waste Management Office.
Claire Downey, Executive for CRNI, says “We can no longer follow this unsustainable ‘take, make and waste’ economic model that makes up the linear economy. At this event, we look forward to initiating the national conversation about the skills and training to build into educational curricula and professional development. This will enable the Irish workforce to deliver on a circular, inclusive and collaborative economy.”
This free event will take place on Tuesday, 29 October from 9:30am – 1:30pm at Athlone Institute of Technology. Register on Eventbrite and visit Community Reuse Network Ireland on www.crni.ie/reuse-month for more event details.