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Poland is phasing out coal: how not to leave the workers behind

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By illuminem briefings

· 2 min read

illuminem summarizes for you the essential news of the day. Read the full piece on Forbes or enjoy below:

🗞️ Driving the news: Poland's transition away from coal is affecting the Silesia region, home to a significant coal mining workforce 
• This shift is part of a national plan to phase out coal by 2049, challenging the livelihoods of many and altering the cultural fabric of the region

🔭 The context: Silesia's economy heavily relies on coal mining, with over 78,000 directly employed in the sector and 21,000 indirectly dependent
• The region's economic and cultural identity is entwined with coal, complicating its transition
• Furthermore, demographic declines and shifting industries pose additional challenges.

🌍 Why it matters for the planet: The transition represents Poland's efforts to decarbonize its economy, contributing to global climate goals
• Green jobs in renewable energy and energy efficiency could replace lost coal jobs, but this shift needs to balance economic and cultural preservation

⏭️ What's next: Retraining and upskilling programs for younger miners and support for phased retirement or cleanup projects for older miners are essential
• The region's industrial potential provides opportunities for job creation, especially in burgeoning industries like green energy

💬 One quote: "Green jobs could create six times the number of jobs currently existing in mining if the country leverages the EU Just Transition Territorial Plan funds."

📈 One stat: The Silesia region has a natural population decrease of 5.76 persons per 1,000 people annually, compounding its economic transition challenges.

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