Green hydrogen will generate 6 lakh jobs: Skill Council for Green Jobs CEO

Skill Council for Green Jobs CEO on courses on green hydrogen, generated using renewable energy, training 10 lakh in the field, and the jobs expected.

Arpit Sharma, new CEO of Skill Council for Green Jobs. (Image: SCGJ)Arpit Sharma, new CEO of Skill Council for Green Jobs. (Image: SCGJ)

Shradha Chettri | June 29, 2024 | 02:48 PM IST

NEW DELHI: In an address to parliament, the President of India described the future as “harit yug” or “green era” and said the government is working to increase investment in green industries, leading to an increase in green jobs. The government has also set up a Skill Council for Green Jobs (SCGJ) aligned with the National Skill Development Mission. Its new chief executive officer, Arpit Sharma, spoke to Careers360 about the avenues of employability in the sector, especially with green hydrogen. He highlighted how the sector will create techno-managerial jobs and increase employability for the engineering students, graduates of industrial training institutes (ITI) and those with background in finance, marketing, among others.

Q. Where does India stand in terms of green hydrogen production?

A. India has been producing hydrogen for ages now. There is consumption of hydrogen in the oil refinery and cement industry. But when we talk of green hydrogen, it essentially means that the electrolysis of water is done through renewable energy, which is emission free. The output does not have carbon emission. The primary sources of green hydrogen production are solar and wind energy in India, that is what we are focussing on. As a country, we are looking at five million metric tons of green hydrogen production by 2030.This would also add to the renewable energy capacity of 125 gigawatts of both solar energy and wind energy.

Q. Where does India then stand in terms of skilling in this field?


As per the report of the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy on skilling, the ministry envisages that 6 lakh jobs will be created across various sectors in the green hydrogen value chain.

Q. When we talk about 6 lakh green jobs, it is a known fact that there is a gap between what is taught at educational institutions and job requirements. How do you plan to bridge the gap?

A. When we talk about technician level education it is not yet being imparted anywhere in the country. So the SCGJ is the first and the only sector skill council which has created qualifications. Of course now we have the hydro carbon skill council; power sector skill council; and logistics skill council which covers the mid-chain and downstream of the green hydrogen value chain.

But when we talk about production of green hydrogen, we are the only sector skill council to take this initiative and we have created around 10 qualification packs already. Of these, we have ready course content for trainers and candidates for six qualifications including

  • Desalination
  • Green hydrogen plant entrepreneur
  • Junior technician.

These are the kinds of qualification packs for level III and level IV that we have created.

We have also created micro credentials on level V, which is about how to evaluate a green hydrogen proposal. It is on the financial side, which can be beneficial for MBA candidates, chartered accountants, company secretaries and finance people. It is available on Skill India Digital.

Q. What are the different job roles green hydrogen will create?

A. Be it solar or wind energy, the sector will require fresh engineers or maybe engineers who have work experience in the renewable energy space. There will be a lot of jobs for ITI graduates as technicians. There would be enough jobs for fresh engineers and those with experience in the solar energy and wind energy space.

To add, for solar energy there is a power purchase agreement, you have an assured buyer for 25 years. In green hydrogen, the concept of PPA still does not exist. There will be a lot of marketing jobs which will be required. Business development people who would actually be able to liaison for someone to offtake the energy, these kinds of jobs would play a vital role. It would be techno-managerial jobs, I would say. It is similar to the solar rooftop segment.

Someone who does the business has to deal with the client, he has to communicate, explain the technology, get installation done and after installation, look into maintenance and operations. The same would happen for green hydrogen.Very professional business executives would be required.

Q. Which group of candidates is the SCGJ targeting with its courses?

A. Qualifications which are on finance or desalination are very new in the market. It is for the new entrants who are about to enter into the green hydrogen industry. When we talk about qualifications like an entrepreneur or junior technician, people who are working in the renewable industry can easily be re-skilled and up-skilled in the green hydrogen space.

Q. With solar and wind an important aspect of green hydrogen, the SCGJ’s report talks about the gap in education in this field. How is the skill council working in the field?

A.When it comes to middle level and higher-level jobs, candidates are always willing to pay money for the course. We launched a course on greenhouse gas emission accounting and reporting and we charged a fee. We were expecting 25 nominations but we received 30 nominations for the training. But when it comes to technician-level courses, the categories are levelsIII and IV and their financial stability is not there, paying capacity is not there. So the technician is expecting a funding agency, be it state or central government or CSR, he is not willing to invest.

We are expecting the government to fund certain green hydrogen courses as part of the skilling mission. We are expecting to conduct around 10 lakh training by 2030.

Q. What has been the industry response in terms of hiring those who have acquired certain kinds of skills under green jobs?

A. In green jobs we have trained specifically under the renewable energy sector. In solar energy, we have trained 1,50,000 people already. From the feedback we have received from training partners, from candidates and some from industry partners, we see that 60% of the people have been retained in the industry. They are getting good packages.

Q.How do councils work with educational institutions?

A. We have about 1,000 affiliated training institutions who impart training, of which 150 are affiliating universities and have close to 200 engineering institutes. They have the infrastructure and they have already been associated with us for the last five-six years. To name some, we have RV College of Engineering in Bengaluru. They have recently set up a green hydrogen lab which is a centre for excellence. Then we have IIT Mandi, Tamil Nadu Agricultural University, The Gandhigram Rural Institute and others. These institutes have dual systems. One: they are providing our qualifications as part of their academic credit system. Apart from this, they have a separate skill division, which does the mobilisation for the outside candidates who are technicians.

For green hydrogen, solar energy we are looking at ITI graduates.

Also read New Jobs: Green energy, waste management jobs to grow by 30 million by 2030, says report

Q. What is your vision as the CEO of the skill council?

A. My vision aligns with the organisational vision and mission 2030, where India has to have 500 gigawatt of renewable energy installed capacity. India has to have 1 billion ton of carbon reduction and this would lead to creation of five crore jobs across various fields, including waste management. The vision is to create more and more relevant job roles which are suitable for the industry. Get better training institutions empanelled as our affiliated training partners.

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