A recently published report by the International Labour Organization (ILO) and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) looks at the impact of a net-zero economy in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC). The report, “Jobs in a net-zero emissions future in Latin America and the Caribbean,” finds that transitioning LAC to net-zero emissions has the potential to create 19 million net jobs in plant-based agriculture by 2030.

According to a previous study by the ILO, LAC will lose 2.5 million jobs from heat stress alone by 2030. Additionally, the IDB estimates that by 2050, climate change will cost the region US$110 billion annually.

The current economic system “locks societies into a high-carbon pathway [making] us more vulnerable to future climate change risks, including health crises,” Adrien Vogt-Schilb, Senior Economist at the IDB and co-author of the report, tells Food Tank. He explains that if LAC countries do not address these problems now, it will become costlier to reverse and reduce emissions later.

The report notes that over time, the transition will result in a loss of 7.5 million jobs in fossil fuel electricity, fossil fuel extraction, and animal-based food production, but create 22.5 million jobs in sectors such as sustainable agriculture, forestry, solar and wind power, manufacturing, and construction.

The report outlines five pillars to achieve a decarbonized economy in LAC by 2050. It calls on the region to do the following: replace fossil fuels with renewable energy, utilize electricity for transportation, cooking and heating, expand public transportation, preserve natural carbon sinks, and reduce waste in all sectors.

Read the full article about net-zero emissions future for Latin America by Sabrina Endicott at Food Tank.