Press Release: ECO Canada fostering next generation of environmental professionals with $23M in wage funding

ECO Canada fostering next generation of environmental professionals with $23M in wage funding

Calgary, AB – ECO Canada, the steward for Canada’s environmental workforce, has revealed from this time last year (July 2019) it has facilitated nearly 3,000 jobs in the environmental sector and provided over $23M in wage funding to employers across all industries.

ECO Canada has been connecting environmental employers and skilled junior talent through employment programs offering wage subsidies for more than 20 years. Despite a tumultuous start to 2020 with the world navigating the effects of the pandemic, the past 12 months have seen demand for skilled environmental professionals in Canada continue to grow.

As part of the Government of Canada’s Youth Employment and Skills Strategy Program (YESS), a total of 2,218 student placements were completed between July 2019 and July 2020 for 549 employers across the country, with over $11M in wage funding distributed.

Completed full-time placements reached 768 for 132 employers, who received more than $12M in funding to help offset the cost of onboarding and training, providing stability around hiring new talent.

“There are two key things we need to be doing if we want to continue building and supporting Canada’s environmental workforce,” said ECO Canada’s President and CEO, Kevin Nilsen. “We need to upskill traditional workers and create a clear pathway for young people looking to work in the sector. For that, strong investment is needed and that’s why programs like those at ECO Canada are in place.”

Research published by ECO Canada suggests 234,000 jobs must be filled in the environmental sector by 2030, to keep up with the industry’s growth and climbing retirement rates and demand for skilled practitioners.

“ECO Canada ensures youth can meet employers’ demands. These young leaders are building our growing green economy,” said Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources, the Honourable Seamus O’Regan.

To date, ECO Canada has facilitated and created more than 10,000 jobs across all industries in the environmental sector and over $55M in distributed funding to almost 6,000 Canadian organizations.

Deanna Mathewson, the Director for Volunteer & Business Development at Shaw Centre for the Salish Sea, has reaped the benefits of ECO Canada’s placement programs.

“We have been participating in this program for several years now and it has allowed us to bring on some fantastic young staff and see them develop within their fields which is rewarding and valuable,” said Mathewson.

To find out more about ECO Canada’s employment programs, visit



Heidi Gammuac
(403) 399-2514

About ECO Canada:

ECO Canada is the steward for the Canadian environmental industry. From job creation and wage funding, to training and labour market research – we champion the end-to-end career of an environmental professional. Our aim is to promote and drive responsible, sustainable economic growth within industry while also ensuring that environmental care and best practice is a priority. Over the past 25 years we have forged the academic partnerships, tools, and research to not only train and certify environmental job seekers we also help to fill the labour market.  |   Twitter   |  LinkedIn  |  Facebook | Instagram

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