Green jobs training plea a 'significant step' for Scotland
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A Scottish Government pledge to invest £125 million in green jobs has been hailed as a significant step for Scotland's renewable energy sector and its workers.
The £100 million Green Jobs Fund and £25 million National Transition Training Fund announced by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon will provide green skills to support Scotland’s net zero carbon emissions target.
The announcement echoes a call by industry body Scottish Renewables' for a renewable transition training fund.
Scottish Renewables chief executive Claire Mack said: “The First Minister’s declaration of a £100 million Green Jobs Fund and a £25 million National Transition Training Fund are significant steps forward not just for our industry – which will require a large number of skilled employees as we work towards our net zero target – but also for all those people whose careers are not compatible with that target.
“Scottish Renewables has worked hard with politicians from all parties over the past four months to make the case that renewable energy should be at the very heart of a green recovery from the coronavirus pandemic. We are pleased that our suggestion of funding to refocus careers and businesses on the provision of green skills to support Scotland’s transition to net-zero has found a place in this Programme for Government, and look forward to working with the Scottish Government as it further develops its plans in the coming months.
“In particular, it is important that Scotland’s skills and enterprise agencies and skills providers work in tandem with industry to ensure that skills which are delivered are those which are required. We are also keen that the development of a Renewable Energy Centre of Excellence takes place in Scotland to provide a physical base for the reshaping of our economy in the decades leading to the 2045 net-zero target.”
The Scottish Government announcement has also won the backing of environmental group Friends of the Earth Scotland.
Dr Richard Dixon said: “The Scottish Government has shown that they know that the future must be greener, safer and fairer but the economic and climate crises demands that we start that work today. Long term commitments to creating green jobs in areas like energy efficiency are really good news, but we should not wait until the next Parliament to make them a reality.
"By taking concrete steps in the coming months to deliver their green jobs commitment, the government will help ensure that we have warmer homes, reductions in climate pollution and new jobs across the country.”