ECA champions green careers

During National Careers Week, ECA seized opportunities to amplify its support for green apprenticeships, green jobs and the net zero agenda across several government forums this week.

ECA supported the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education (IfATE) at an event in the House of Lords to mark National Careers Week on Monday 7 March.

The event was hosted by Rt Hon Baroness McGregor-Smith CBE, the new chair of the Institute’s board. Also in attendance were employers and key stakeholders from the education sector, as well as electrotechnical and construction apprentices.

Luke Osborne, Energy and Emerging Technologies Solutions Advisor for ECA and a member of the Green Apprenticeships Advisory Panel, supported IfATE at the event. He says, “The event highlighted IfATE’s activities and the doors apprenticeships can open. The importance of collaboration between employers and colleges is also vital.

“With the skills and Post-16 Education Bill set to pass Royal Assent in the near future, education pathways will radically change, providing new and viable options for school leavers and career changers.”

ECA also attended the Westminster Employment Forum on Green Jobs on 10 March. With input from, among others, BEIS, local authorities, and National Grid, it was clear that education and upskilling, at all levels, was the key to the safe and fair transition to net zero.

The forum, hosted by Philip Dunne MP, Chair of the Environmental Audit Committee, considered the best ways to equip today’s workforce with the green skills to help them deliver net zero solutions.

Estimates presented at the event suggest there will be 400,000 jobs in the energy sector by 2050. 30,000 of these are needed between 2025 and 2030 to achieve current net zero targets.

A successor to the Green Jobs Task force was announced. Named the Green Jobs Delivery Group, it will consist of a cross-government coalition headed up by ministers, but with an industry chair.

Jane Dawson, ECA’s Head of Public Relations and Public Affairs, says “It is heartening to see so much thought given to the skills needed for the surge in green jobs. While delivery of green courses remains patchy, the groundwork of upskilling our workforce has begun.

“But, reaching net zero will only be possible if we attract new people to the energy sector, those who’ve never thought it possible before. And, we must be inventive and agile supporting them throughout their careers.”

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