Today the Prime Minister announced that £160 million will be made available to upgrade ports and infrastructure, as Government set out new plans to Build Back Greener and be a world leader in clean wind energy.

The UK Government state that this new investment will see around 2,000 construction jobs rapidly created and will enable the sector to support up to 60,000 jobs directly and indirectly by 2030 in ports, factories and the supply chains, manufacturing the next-generation of offshore wind turbines and delivering clean energy to the UK.

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Welcoming the announcement, Professor Karen Turner, Director of the Centre for Energy Policy at the University of Strathclyde said:

“We welcome the announcement today that the UK Government is making an important early investment in ports and related infrastructure to support net zero actions. While this specific investment supports the evolution and growth of offshore wind in particular, it is a crucially important step in building infrastructure capacity to exploit the UK’s extensive marine resources.

Continued investment in our ports and infrastructure will be crucial not only in further advancing our access to electricity from offshore wind but also to enable activities such as important hydrogen, exporting carbon management services – all of which would exploit our existing off and onshore workforce and skills capacity – and generally to create and exploit opportunities for the net zero transition to be a prosperous one.

“The focus on building up UK supply chain capacity is a crucial one. Our research at CEP demonstrates that the evolution of net economic benefits will be greatest if UK supply chains are utilised in, and can be effectively supported in evolving to service the delivery of low carbon projects and services. We hope this funding will be targeted in ways that effectively enable necessary increases in the capacity and competitiveness of UK supply chains, recognising the contribution this could have in terms of securing returns to investment and ensuring security in direct jobs and employment in the wider regional and national economies of the UK as we move forward through net zero transition.

“However, it is equally important that infrastructure and supply chain development go hand in hand with driving down the cost of renewable electricity to consumers and industry. Our research has shown that, if coordinated and delivered in the right way, regionally directed centralised funding of this type could be a step in the right direction in developing a holistic approach to delivering a net zero economy and society.”

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