SWM News November 2020: The potential for the Low Carbon Sector
Our economy has undoubtedly taken a battering over the past nine months and with Brexit to come, the future looks equally challenging. But what about the low carbon economy? Is the picture as bleak or are there signs of promise?
The national focus on a green recovery from Covid-19, including the recently announced ‘Ten Point Plan for a Green Revolution’, means opportunities for the LCGES sector and we’re working on this for a range of customers.
A recent study from the Midlands Engine sets out the economic impact of Covid-19 on the LCEGS sector. The sector has grown its GVA by 26.6% since 2010, compared to 5.6% growth for the UK, and accounts for 5.1% of the total Midlands Engine economy. The majority of these businesses are small or even microenterprises. Businesses have been forced to furlough 20.8% of eligible staff, totalling 12,000 employees. Whilst job postings for the sector saw a reduction of over 30% between March and May, they recovered by August 2020.
Through funding from BEIS we have been commissioned by the Midlands Energy Hub, working in partnership with kMatrix Data Solutions, to provide a Midlands wide analysis of the LCEGS sector. We will assess changes to the sector over the past three years and look at the impact of Covid. Across all nine Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) we will provide key data for the sector, and enrich this data through extensive stakeholder engagement. When we publish the findings in March, we hope they will help in identifying the support needed to grow essential skills in the sector, and lead to more jobs and growth in our region, addressing many recommendations of the Midlands Engine report above.
Through our literature review, the evidence is clear. The LCGES sector plays a significant and growing role in the Midlands economy. It is a sector that encompasses all organisations but particularly small, innovative enterprises. The potential is huge. It is only by targeting our collective support at building the right skills in this sector that we will harness this potential. With a region of diverse strengths including energy, construction, advanced manufacturing, agri-tech and mobility, this support must be evidence based and locally relevant.
Join us at our Annual Conference this Thursday where we focus on the green recovery and discuss how we can take learning from 2020 to move towards our Roadmap targets including all of these sectors, with a focus on jobs and skills. We’ll be ‘In Conversation with Shaun Spiers’, Executive Director at the Green Alliance and Chair of Greener UK so this is one not to miss. Registrations close at 5pm today!
Read 'Our Comment' for a more detailed overview of the Low Carbon Sector and ways to get involved.
Anna Bright, Chief Executive, on behalf of the team at SWM