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How to create green jobs and cut emissions from UK industry

The government’s new Industrial Decarbonisation Strategy sets out its vision for building a greener future for the manufacturing and construction sector, with measures to create and support 80,000 UK jobs over the next 30 years while cutting emissions by two-thirds in just 15 years.

The strategy will be underpinned by supporting existing industry to decarbonise, and encouraging the growth of new, low-carbon industries, says the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS). It will give businesses long-term certainty to invest in home-grown decarbonisation technology, such as that which can capture and store carbon emissions from industrial plants – rather than outsourcing industrial activity beyond the UK.

The blueprint also includes measures to move towards greener energy sources, with an expectation of around 40% of UK industry’s energy supply switching from fossil fuel sources to low-carbon alternatives by 2030.

Key commitments within the Industrial Decarbonisation Strategy include:
  • to use carbon pricing as tool for getting industry to take account of its emissions in business and investment decisions;
  • to establish the right policy framework to ensure uptake of fuel switching in industry from fossil fuels to low carbon alternatives; 
  • to establish a targeted approach to mitigate against carbon leakage that meets the government’s domestic and global climate goals, while keeping businesses competitive;
  • to work with the Steel Council to consider the implications of the Climate Change Committee’s recommendation to set targets for steelmaking to reach near-zero emissions by 2035;
  • support for the skills transition so that the current and future workforce benefit from the creation of new green jobs; and
  • an expectation that industrial emissions will fall by two-thirds by 2035, and by at least 90% by 2050, compared to 2018 levels.
 To begin the process, £171mn from the Industrial Decarbonisation Challenge has been allocated to nine projects in Scotland, South Wales and North West, Humber and Teesside in England, to undertake studies for the rollout of decarbonisation infrastructure, such as carbon capture usage and storage (CCUS) and hydrogen production. The funding is being awarded through UKRI’s Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF) decarbonisation of industrial clusters.

The nine winning projects include three offshore storage sites for carbon dioxide (in the North West, North East and Scotland) and carbon dioxide capture and/or hydrogen production projects in the North West, Scotland, Teesside, Humberside (two projects) and south Wales.

News Item details

Journal title: Energy World

Countries: UK -

Organisation: Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy

Subjects: Jobs, Decarbonisation

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