1 July, 2021

Towards a just transition of the workplace: Baseline Analysis for the Electricity and Road Transport Sectors in Antigua and Barbuda


gray concrete road between trees

Countries are called to communicate enhanced “nationally determined contributions” (NDCs) to work towards the Paris Agreement goals. The revised draft NDC for Antigua and Barbuda establishes a number of targets and sub-targets primarily within the electricity and transport sectors. For electricity, by 2030, 86% of electricity demand is to be met through renewable energy sources. In the transport sector, the use of internal combustion engines is to be phased out by 2040.

Moreover, a Just Transition of the workforce by 2030 is envisioned. This study aims at analysing the employment implications of Antigua and Barbuda transitioning to a low carbon economy and discussing the various social dimensions of a ‘Just Transition’, with a focus on electricity and road transport. This report assesses the employment impacts for a scenario derived based on the current draft NDC targets compared to a Business-as-Usual Scenario, with a focus on road transport and the electricity sector.

The quantitative part of this analysis focuses on direct jobs in the electricity and transport sectors using an employment factor approach, for which multipliers specific to Antigua and Barbuda are derived engaging stakeholders and local experts. This is complemented with a qualitative assessment of the context and wider implications informed by expert and stakeholder interviews. Key recommendations for a policy framework for a Just Transition were developed based on the baseline analysis.

Figure ES1: Total employment impacts
Figure ES1: Total employment impacts – electricity sector and road transport sector combined for BAU and NDC scenario. The shading illustrates that uncertainty around the estimates increases going more into the future

The aggregated direct employment estimates from this analysis (see Figure ES1) suggest that the energy transition and transport electrification would create substantial employment benefits compared to the fossil-fuel dominated Business-as-Usual Scenario.

In particular, the build-up of new infrastructure – with substantial amounts of renewable energy and battery storage installations as well as electric vehicle charging infrastructure to be installed – is expected to create new and ‘greener’ jobs as compared to the Business-as-Usual case, replacing fossil-related jobs.

In the longer term, when the new infrastructure is already mostly built, jobs in typically less labour-intensive operations and maintenance would dominate. At the same time, learning effects would also increase productivity over time and the employment impacts may settle at a more moderate level similar to the employment in the BAU. The employment impacts have been estimated based on available data for current employment and expected trends in the electricity generation sector and road transport sector.

Consultation with local experts and stakeholders provided input and feedback on underlying assumptions.