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PM’s investment in retrofit and hydrogen welcomed by energy industry

19 November 2020

The Association for Decentralised Energy (The ADE) welcomes the announcement made today (17/11/20) by the Prime Minister introducing a Ten Point Plan for a green economic recovery. The Plan will ensure the UK’s regions are at the heart of economic recovery from the pandemic and the UK’s progress to net zero.

The Prime Minister’s pledge to extend the national buildings renovation programme and provide funding support for innovation in hydrogen will support jobs right across the country: in the Humber, Portsmouth, Sunderland, Swansea and Fife.

The announcement included:

  • An additional £1 billion in funding for energy efficiency, with a one-year extension to the multi-billion pound Green Homes Grant already announced, and a pledge towards ‘Making our homes, schools and hospitals greener, warmer and more energy efficient, whilst creating 50,000 jobs by 2030’
  • A commitment to provide funding support for innovation in hydrogen on site in the UK’s industrial clusters by ‘working with industry aiming to generate 5GW of low carbon hydrogen production capacity by 2030 for industry, transport, power and homes’

As a trade body, the ADE represents over 150 members including the businesses who will be delivering the retrofit work in homes and places of work, across the regions and nations of the UK. The ADE also represents the owners and operators of combined heat and power (CHP), currently capturing both the useful heat and electricity from combustion in the industrial heartlands of the UK- with these industrial clusters namechecked explicitly at the opening of the Prime Minister’s announcements.

Caroline Bragg, Head of Policy at the ADE said:

“Fixing our drafty, leaky, cold homes matters to voters up and down the country. It brings the green industrial revolution to every voter in every constituency.

Retrofit will mean jobs for installers, technicians and back office staff - supporting young apprentices and those retraining. Industry is just getting started with the first vouchers of the Green Homes Grant and we welcome the Prime Minister’s commitment to extending the national buildings retrofit programme.

We are also delighted to see the Government moving decisively towards supporting hydrogen production in the UK for use in heavy industry.”

Russell Smith, Director, Retrofit Works, who sits on the UK Green Jobs Taskforce and is an ADE member said:

“This announcement confirms the core role that retrofit plays in getting us to net zero and the retrofit industry can and will rise to the challenge.

Our recent work modelling the retrofit works needed to move our housing stock to net zero showed a need for around 500,000 additional trained professionals and tradespeople. This is a 250% increase to the existing industry workforce, requiring people at all levels and all backgrounds from across the country. Some existing skills from other sectors can move across very easily, some may need more time.

The good news is that with the new Apprenticeship Standards model initiated in August 2020 we can ensure that the mobilisation of new people can be flexible enough to cope with the varying demands.”

Dave Robson, CEO of Instagroup, an ADE member business, said:

"We warmly welcome the 12-month extension to the Green Homes Grant. As an installation business operating across the country, we have a strong message to Government - let's work together to get real, high-quality retrofits happening on the ground now.

We know Government recognises the urgent need to give installers and wider supply chain the confidence to invest, recruit and train the workforce. Let's now get going!"

Iwan Hughes, Head of Policy & Regulation, VPI Immingham LLP and part of Humber Zero decarbonisation project, said:

“The Government has the opportunity to place the UK at the forefront of industrial CHP decarbonisation by using hydrogen.

Every high-quality, green job created trickles down to support regional economies and encourages the development of skill-sets to grow businesses, and UK plc in the future”

ENDS

About the ADE

The Association for Decentralised Energy is setting the vision of a local, efficient, low carbon energy system which enables energy users to make the choices which work for them. The Association has more than 150 members active across a range of technologies and markets and is widely recognised as one of the leading industry bodies in the sustainable energy sector.

Related publications

The ADE Green Recovery Paper: https://www.theade.co.uk/news/ade-news/ade-statement-on-green-recovery-priority-must-be-backing-a-national-buildin
EEIG, ‘From the Green Homes Grant towards a resilient Net Zero economy’: https://www.theeeig.co.uk/media/1099/eeig_report_turning_stimulus_into_recovery_pages_web.pdf

For further information please contact:

Lucy Symons- Jones, Head of External Affairs, The ADE, Tel: +44 (0)7 906 445 775, Lucy.symons-jones@theade.co.uk

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