Global Wind Organisation (GWO) and Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) have published their latest joint report forecasting the numbers of wind technicians required over the next five years. The Global Wind Workforce Outlook 2022-2026 report reveals a 33% growth in the number of wind technicians needing standard industry training: up from 426,700 in 2021 to 568,800 by 2026. The need to recruit the extra 142,100 new technicians over the next five years suggests a raft of opportunities for new talent to enter from full-time education and to transition from other sectors, including some currently working in fossil fuels. The Global Wind Workforce Outlook 2022-2026 highlights an urgent need for faster growth in safety and technical training capacity to meet the current gaps in supply. The report demonstrates a significant opportunity for up to 450,000 technicians to complete their industry standard, GWO training during the next five years. With 80% of these 450,000 technicians required in seven countries: China, USA, India, Brazil, Japan, Vietnam, and South Korea, growth in these markets will be particularly notable. “Over the next five years, the industry has a clear need for increased availability of recognisable safety training globally and in nine selected markets in particular,” says Jakob Lau Holst, CEO of Global Wind Organisation. “For a smooth transition from fossil fuels to a sustainable future, it is imperative that safety training keeps apace with wind industry growth. I hope this report will help to build confidence for investors and policy makers by forecasting steady and sustainable industry growth, trigger increased awareness of the tremendous opportunity to foster business and job creation, and put workforce safety to the forefront of their agenda.”
By the end of 2026, the worldwide wind fleet will be roughly 1,394GW, more than double the level before the COVID-19 pandemic. Consequently, the number of wind technicians that will require industry training will increase 33% from 426,700 in 2021 to 568,800 in 2026. The number of new wind technicians is expected to increase by 28,400 on average per year from 2022 to 2026.
At the end of 2021, 119,000 technicians (or 28% of the estimated workforce) already held at least one valid certificate from GWO’s Basic Safety Training (BST) Standard. This means that from 2022 to 2026 an additional 449,800 technicians will need wind industry training. 80% of these technicians will be required in seven countries: China, USA, India, Brazil, Japan, Vietnam, and South Korea.
Total wind technician workforce will grow most rapidly offshore (92% higher in 2026 against 2021) compared to onshore (27% higher in 2026 against 2021). By 2026, 87% of the technicians will be working onshore, mostly (and increasingly) within the operation & management segment.