Energy & Utility Skills (EU Skills) works in close collaboration with the key employers and stakeholders that operate within our sector and play a lead role in co-ordinating skills-related activities across the low carbon industry through the cross sector, cross Government Low Carbon Skills Steering Group.
All our industries have a central role to play in delivering the decarbonisation of power, industry, homes and transport with major priorities established by the sector supporting renewable energy and energy efficiency targets. EU Skills and our industries are therefore key to ensuring Government meets their carbon reduction targets, secure energy supply and maximise the economic opportunity the low carbon agenda presents.
Low carbon technologies are not new industries but are extensions to existing industries and activities. Employment is relatively low in numbers in terms of direct jobs, although there is potential for significant growth, particularly in offshore wind in the near future and marine (wave and tidal) and Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) in the longer-term. The extent to which new jobs will be created will vary by technology and section of the supply chain. Currently, there is no clear evidence that technical jobs will change significantly over the next decade - it is more likely that upskilling of core skills will be required.
With shortages in most engineering disciplines, both for highly qualified engineers and for experienced technicians, there is an increasing reliance on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) skills, which will exacerbate current shortages as competition increases from other sections of the economy. Upskilling and re-skilling will be critical to delivery and can be delivered quickly, but the experience to carry out the roles effectively and unsupervised takes significantly longer. Skills from redundant workers could support 'renewables' skills requirements but there is a need to consider transferable skills and non-traditional entry routes.