Government funding to boost green skills

6th October 2011


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  • Renewable ,
  • Skills ,
  • Training ,
  • Energy ,
  • Manufacturing

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IEMA

The renewable energy and utilities sectors are among industries sharing £11 million of government funding aimed at ensuring the UK has the technical skills base it needs for future economic growth.

Announced by business secretary Vince Cable, the grants are the first to be awarded from the government’s Growth and Innovation Fund and will enable industry bodies to create hundreds of new apprenticeships, pay for thousands of individuals to retrain and ensure the development of new professional standards.

Marine and wind energy trade association RenewableUK has been awarded £580,000, matched by a further £600,000 from the private sector, to create the Renewables Training Network, which will work to address the sector’s “critical skills shortage” by training 2,000 individuals over the next two years.

“The development of the UK renewables sector, and in particular the offshore market, is fundamental in driving carbon reduction, security of supply and economic growth,” said Steve Burgin, UK president for power company Alstom. “Timely investment in renewables skills development ahead of the anticipated demand surge is essential to ensure that the sector can deliver efficiently, affordably and safely.”

A further £360,000 was awarded to sector skills council for the energy and utilities industries, which will use the investment to ensure the sector has skilled technicians able to provide effective resource management through a newly formed Talent Bank.

“Without a resource efficient gas, power, waste management and water sector the economy, and indeed society cannot effectively function,” said Tim Balcon chief executive of EU Skills. “Employers are very clear that the Talent Bank addresses issues that are common to the sector and cannot be solved by individual companies alone.”

Other grants awarded under the government scheme include £925,000 to develop skills in manufacturing within the nuclear sector and £50,000 to Lantra to create a professional standards framework for rural industries.

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