The UK Government announced funding today for at least 1000 apprenticeships as part of its Green Deal scheme to insulate the country’s homes and businesses.
The plans, which are being announced during a visit by Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg and Energy and Climate Change Secretary Chris Huhne to retailer B&Q’s energy efficient store in Sutton, are part of a package of measures aimed at creating a skilled workforce able to deliver the Green Deal.
The new apprenticeships, which are being backed by leading companies including B&Q, Carillion, E.ON, British Gas and InstaGroup, will be focused in areas such as cavity and solid-wall insulation, energy efficient heating systems and other green technologies.
“These apprenticeships are a perfect example of how government and business can work together towards a low carbon future,” says Clegg.
Funding for apprenticeships in England will be increased to over £1.4 billion for the next year for 16 to 24 year olds, but the ‘Green Deal’ places make up a tiny fraction of the 350,000 total.
The measures are also aimed at prompting employers and skills councils – SummitSkills, Asset Skills and ConstructionSkills – to design new apprenticeships and adapt existing ones to match the needs of the low-carbon sector.
Meanwhile, the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) will set new standards for low-carbon technology installers and encourage the taking on of new trainees and retraining of existing staff.
“The Green Deal is likely to support 100,000 jobs by 2015 and up to 250,000 when it reaches its peak,” says Huhne. “[It] will be great news for local economies with local firms encouraged to get involved.”
For further information:
UK Government invests £2.5 million in green skills (8-Feb)
Scotland announces 650 low-carbon training places (20-Oct 2010)
British Gas green skills training centre opens its doors (14-May 2010)
UK’s Merseyside to get microgeneration training centre (22-Apr 2010)
08 March 2011