About 150,000 jobs are being created within the "green economy", the water and environmental affairs department said on Monday.
"In a nutshell we are already implementing a programme that is beginning to contribute to 150,000 jobs in this financial year...we are talking about newly created jobs," said Director General Nosipho Ncaba at The New Age business briefing in Sandton.
"The Green Fund is the mechanism for us to at least make sure that there are enterprises set up to create development opportunities that are associated with either natural resources rehabilitation or greening the footprint," she said.
The department was given R800 million for the Green Fund which would contribute to creating 300,000 jobs in the next three years.
Minister Edna Molewa, who was also at the briefing said 800 school leavers and unemployed graduates would be recruited to undergo training in this field.
She said the programme would be for a period of two and a half years and participants would be recruited mainly from rural areas.
"We will ensure that participants are mentored and receive relevant experience to gain access into permanent jobs in biodiversity and the green economy," said Molewa.