The Role of TVET in Mitigating Climate Change among SMEs
Keywords:climate change, economy, environment, greening, TVET
Business enterprises, particularly small and medium scale enterprises (SMEs) are the mainstay
of many economies, but are faced with a lot of challenges, including climate change impacts.
This work investigated the role of TVET in mitigating climate change among SMEs.
Questionnaire survey was conducted on 210 SMEs randomly selected in the three economic
hubs: Awka, Onitsha and Nnewi in southeast Nigeria. Results showed that the level of
awareness on climate change was low and that even though businesses contribute to it, they
were mostly not aware of that. Much of the SMEs use sources of power that is less climate
friendly (generators) than other more environmentally friendly options (mainly solar energy).
The SMEs have requisite knowledge about their businesses but their level of awareness on
TVET and adaptive capacity to climate change are low. Their levels of education did not
determine or influence their knowledge on TVET; hence the need to expose firms and the
society to its rudiments. Formal education was perceived as a better method of teaching TVET,
but needs to be combined with informal education so that much of the staff of SMEs could be
reached more effectively. Transfer of information on green industrialization was deemed
necessary and methods such as: using experienced entrepreneurs,seminars/workshops, annual
training, government enforced training and short courses/internships (in decreasing order of
effectiveness) were identified as veritable pathways to achieving that. There is need to sensitize
the SMEs to have plans for managing climate risks and promote the use of technologies that
are not only recent, but are climate friendly and green. TVET has the capacity to actualize the
desired green industrialization and climate change adaptations among SMEs, but will require
proactive measures such as promoting new forms of education for employees, ongoing training
within companies, establishing vocational centres and exposing the younger generation to such
initiatives all through their formal education process.