Think the ‘green’ sector doesn’t apply to your business? Think again. Any freelancer should read through the PM’s target sectors and think of how they could pivot or blend their goods or services to any of those segments and the likely projects, products and services that will be in demand. Think outside the box, freelancers, contractors and startups!
The Prime Minister this week has set out his ten-point plan for a green industrial revolution which will create and support up to 250,000 British jobs.
Covering clean energy, transport, nature and innovative technologies, the Prime Minister’s blueprint will allow the UK to forge ahead with eradicating its contribution to climate change by 2050, particularly crucial in the run up to the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow next year.
“At the centre of his blueprint are the UK’s industrial heartlands, including in the North East, Yorkshire and the Humber, West Midlands, Scotland and Wales, which will drive forward the green industrial revolution and build green jobs and industries of the future,” said the government in a statement.
- Offshore wind: Producing enough offshore wind to power every home, quadrupling how much we produce to 40GW by 2030, supporting up to 60,000 jobs.
- Hydrogen: Working with industry aiming to generate 5GW of low carbon hydrogen production capacity by 2030 for industry, transport, power and homes, and aiming to develop the first town heated entirely by hydrogen by the end of the decade. Up to £500 million, including for trialling homes using hydrogen for heating and cooking, starting with a Hydrogen Neighbourhood in 2023, moving to a Hydrogen Village by 2025, with an aim for a Hydrogen Town – equivalent to tens of thousands of homes – before the end of the decade. Of this funding, £240 million will go into new hydrogen production facilities.
- Nuclear: Advancing nuclear as a clean energy source, across large scale nuclear and developing the next generation of small and advanced reactors, which could support 10,000 jobs. Investment of £525 million to help develop large and smaller-scale nuclear plants, and research and develop new advanced modular reactors.
- Electric vehicles: Backing our world-leading car manufacturing bases including in the West Midlands, North East and North Wales to accelerate the transition to electric vehicles, and transforming our national infrastructure to better support electric vehicles.
- Public transport, cycling and walking: Making cycling and walking more attractive ways to travel and investing in zero-emission public transport of the future.
- Jet Zero and greener maritime: Supporting difficult-to-decarbonise industries to become greener through research projects for zero-emission planes and ships.
- Homes and public buildings: Making our homes, schools and hospitals greener, warmer and more energy-efficient, whilst creating 50,000 jobs by 2030, and a target to install 600,000 heat pumps every year by 2028.
- Carbon capture: Becoming a world-leader in technology to capture and store harmful emissions away from the atmosphere, with a target to remove 10MT of carbon dioxide by 2030, equivalent to all emissions of the industrial Humber today. An extra £200 million of new funding to create two carbon capture clusters by the mid-2020s, with another two set to be created by 2030. This increased the total invested to £1 billion, helping to support 50,000 jobs, potentially in areas such as the Humber, Teesside, Merseyside, Grangemouth and Port Talbot.
- Nature: Protecting and restoring our natural environment, planting 30,000 hectares of trees every year, whilst creating and retaining thousands of jobs.
- Innovation and finance: Developing the cutting-edge technologies needed to reach these new energy ambitions and make the City of London the global centre of green finance.
“Our green industrial revolution will be powered by the wind turbines of Scotland and the North East, propelled by the electric vehicles made in the Midlands and advanced by the latest technologies developed in Wales, so we can look ahead to a more prosperous, greener future,” said Prime Minister Johnson.
Following extensive consultation with car manufacturers and sellers, the Prime Minister has confirmed that the UK will end the sale of new petrol and diesel cars and vans by 2030, ten years earlier than planned. However, we will allow the sale of hybrid cars and vans that can drive a significant distance with no carbon coming out of the tailpipe until 2035.
The UK car industry already manufactures a significant proportion of electric vehicles in Europe, including one of the most popular models in the world.
To support this acceleration, the Prime Minister has announced:
- £1.3 billion to accelerate the rollout of chargepoints for electric vehicles in homes, streets and on motorways across England, so people can more easily and conveniently charge their cars.
- £582 million in grants for those buying zero or ultra-low emission vehicles to make them cheaper to buy and incentivise more people to make the transition.
- Nearly £500 million to be spent in the next four years for the development and mass-scale production of electric vehicle batteries, as part of our commitment to provide up to £1 billion, boosting international investment into our strong manufacturing bases including in the Midlands and North East.
This will help protect and create thousands of new jobs, particularly in the Midlands, North East, and North Wales.
The government said in its statement that it will launch a consultation on the phase-out of new diesel HGVs to put the UK in the vanguard of zero-emission freight. No date has been set yet.
Homes and public buildings
A total of £1 billion next year is being earmarked for new and existing homes and public buildings more efficient, extending the Green Homes Grant voucher scheme by a year and making public sector buildings greener and cutting bills for hospitals and schools, as part of the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme.
Some £20 million will be available for a competition to develop clean maritime technology, such as feasibility studies on key sites, including Orkney and Teesside.
This follows plans to make the UK the world leader in clean wind energy, and plans for greater protections for England’s iconic landscapes and the creation of new national parks, as set out by the Prime Minister over the last few weeks.
Other key parts of the plan will be driven forward by significant investment set out over the last year, including the £1 billion energy innovation fund to stay ahead of the latest technologies needed to reach new energy targets, £5 billion for alternative greener ways of travel including cycling, walking, and buses, and £5.2 billion to create for new flood and coastal defences in England by 2027.
On Wednesday the Prime Minister was scheduled to host a virtual roundtable with green investors to set out his ambitious plan and incentivise further private sector investment, which should spark large investment plans for infrastructure projects backed by large institutional investors.
“This marks the beginning of the UK’s path to net zero, with further plans to reduce emissions whilst creating jobs to follow over the next year in the run-up to the international COP26 climate summit in Glasgow next year,” said the statement.