Amongst news that the British economy has dropped by 20.1% during the lockdown period, positive news has begun to emerge about the possibilities offered by the renewable energy industry in England.
The Local Government Association has just published a report which shows that 700,000 new skilled jobs could be created in low-carbon roles by 2030 if the industry continues its current growth trajectory. These new jobs in England could further boost to 1.18 million by 2050, particularly if investment continues to be encouraged and supporting training and other infrastructure is put into place.
The hope is that this burgeoning sector will help to mitigate the economic damage caused by the Covid-19 crisis and lockdown and to further boost the UK's position on the global stage as a clean energy leader.
The GA is urging the government to take a proactive approach to working with Britain's councils in order to develop recovery options for the country. These would include proposals to create a guarantee programme for jobs to generate fresh opportunities in the low-carbon and other sectors.
The GA also wants to see funding for training and employment schemes devolved to combined authorities and councils. The study showed that demand for skilled jobs in the green economy will grow rapidly as the country moves towards its ambition of being a net-zero economy and help to mitigate the job losses that are likely to accelerate after furlough ends in October.
About half of these jobs will be within clean energy generation, such as installing solar panels, making wind turbines and installing heat pumps. Around a fifth will be involved in energy-efficiency products, and 20% will be in services relating to the low-carbon economy and alternative fuel production. Around 14% will be in low-emission vehicles.