SUDBURY -- Two Sudbury area MPs have announced federal funding to hire two youth interns to help local businesses explore and adopt green technologies.

Since its inception more than 30 years ago, FedNor's youth internship initiatives have helped create about 1,800 jobs to help keep youth in northern Ontario.

The FedNor funding will support two internships at Mine Connect and Green Economy Canada. The local Liberal MPs said it's about investing in youth and helping businesses make strides towards a low-carbon future.

"When we look at the youth that are saying we have to really, really look at our environment," said Marc Serre, Nickel Belt MP. "When we look at the outdoors, we only have one environment, but most importantly this is an opportunity to retool, look at business opportunities, to look at more of a greener economy."

Sudbury MP Paul Lefebvre said there are many green opportunities in the north.

Keeping you in the north

"Certainly the clean economy is key and the world is going in that direction, the transitioning is happening now and Sudbury and northern Ontario is capitalizing on it and will be able to capitalize it even more," said Lefebvre.

Serre said it's about keeping youth in the north.

"When we look at outmigration, when we are looking at skills shortages, when we are looking at an aging population, northern Ontario needs to ensure that we create more jobs and the green economy is an opportunity to do that," he said.

Lefebvre said the internships will help connect people to jobs.

"There (are) a lot of jobs in northern Ontario that are not being filled, so there is kind of a gap in the sense that jobs without people, people without jobs," he said.

"So that's why these positions, these interns, are so key because there are businesses that are looking for people and there is an opportunity for a recent graduate to be able to apply and to get this opportunity."

The politicians said they hope the investments in the internships helps northern businesses move toward the shift to a greener economy, at the same time creating and connecting young people to jobs here.