Europe faces major wind staff shortage

EUROPE: The European wind industry is facing potential shortages in trained staff of up to 18,000 by 2030, or 5% of the entire workforce.

The results were presented at EWEA 2013 by the EU's Wind Energy Technology Platform and based on research by GL Garrad Hassan.

Speaking to Windpower TV at EWEA 2013, GL Garrad Hassan chairman Andrew Garrad said operations and maintenance could be worst affected, with a shortfall as high as 10,000 by 2030.

Offshore could be the worst hit, said Garrad. "There we're competing directly with the oil and gas industry, which still pays quite a lot more than the wind business."

Recommendations in the report, include:

  • Promoting science, technology, engineering and maths skills in vocational training 
  • Increase industry input into academic courses
  • More graduates of wind generalist courses
  • Harmonisation of vocational training and education across the EU
  • More emphasis on training in operations and maintenance

Garrad also called for the industry to get people interested in the engineering aspect of the wind industry.

He said: "We have no trouble bringing in talented people. But they're all short of experience. We can't do anything about that, so we have to provide them with the training."

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