Skills Impact was funded by the Australian Government to undertake a cross-sectoral project that reviewed current and emerging developments in environmental sustainability skills, the skills required to support transition to a sustainable economy. The project examined workforce skilling implications and identified related skills needs shared by multiple industry sectors in relation to environmentally sustainable products, manufacturing and waste processes, and sustainable energy production.

Project Deliverables

  • A scoping report to define environmental sustainability skills relevant to multiple industry sectors
  • Identification of skills suitable for codification as units of competency, skills sets or qualifications, that are common across multiple industries
  • A report on skill needs and training package implications (units, skill sets, qualifications)
  • A detailed Case for Change.


Project Summary

Skills Impact worked in collaboration with Australian Industry Standards Limited, IBSA Manufacturing and in co-operation with other SSOs to ensure the project was informed by perspectives and insights from across all industries. The project was guided by a project reference group (PRG) with membership drawn from Industry Reference Committees (IRCs) with an interest in the outcomes of the project.

Initial research was presented to the PRG in early August 2017. Three focus areas were identified for further investigation due to their relevance to a number of industries and occupations. These are: environmentally sustainable production methods and energy management; natural resource management and waste handling; and consumer/market driven sustainability practices.

Investigation and analysis of current training packages identified:

  • potential areas of duplication across industries
  • existing competencies with potential for modification to allow use across industries
  • gaps where there might be opportunities to develop new units of competency and skill sets.

A draft report was available for stakeholder feedback during October 2017 and responses received informed the development of a draft Case for Change. In November 2017, the draft Case for Change was distributed to State/Territory Training Authorities and impacted Industry Reference Committees seeking their comment and support.

Note: this project was previously called the ‘Green Skills Project’

Stakeholder Input

Thank you to those who provided feedback on the draft Environmental Sustainability Skills report. Skills Impact has used your input to inform the development of a Case for Change and an IRC Briefing Paper. The briefing paper outlines the proposed changes to training packages, while full details are available in the draft Case for Change.

The Project Reference Group has now finalised the Case for Change and it was submitted to the Department of Education and Training in November 2017.

Download the final Case for Change

For more information on the project, please contact us.


Skills Impact worked collaboratively with industry stakeholders to:

  • Define environmental sustainability skills within the scope of this project
  • Compile research on current and future needs for environmental sustainability skills
  • Consult with industry to identify and validate common skills across industry areas
  • Identify training package components (units, skill sets, qualifications) that need to be developed, modified, adapted or removed
  • Develop a Case for Change.

The resulting Case for Change analysed cross-industry environmental sustainability skill areas, in the light of existing training packages, to identify gaps and areas of duplication. The analysis identified existing sector-specific competencies that could be adapted for use across industries. Analysis also identified opportunities for the development of new cross-industry units of competency, skill sets or qualifications.