Ghana : Workers strive to be at forefront of green economy transition

Last 24 May, the Timber and Woodworkers’ Union (TWU) and BWI, with the help of IndustriEnergi Norway, launched a comprehensive climate change training program in Kumasi, Ghana. The program covered a variety of topics, such as climate change research, the effects of climate change on the wood and forestry industries, and strategies to lower greenhouse gas emissions and transition to a more sustainable economy.

The wood and forestry industries are amongst the most vulnerable to climate change. TWU and BWI both recognised the need to provide trade union activists with the knowledge and skills to respond to this crucial issue. The unions said that one of the training program's primary goals is to help workers develop a strong and united voice for climate change action. Trade unions can collaborate to develop policies and campaigns that address workers' concerns while safeguarding the environment through climate change education. 

The training program will also ensure that no worker is left behind in the transition to a more sustainable economy. As more jobs in the renewable energy and other low-carbon sectors are generated, workers must be prepared to take advantage of these new opportunities. Thus, TWU and BWI want their members and affiliates to be at the forefront of this transition. 

TWU Chair Georgina Smedlye said that the training aims to foster collaboration amongst trade unions, environmental organisations, and community groups. “By working together, different groups can build a powerful coalition that can push for meaningful action to address climate change at the local, national, and international levels,” she said.