Business Development Strategy

The Most Energy Efficient Country can create jobs!

The UK has been ranked as the most energy efficient country in the world according to a new study which calculates countries’ efforts to reduce energy use and shows the overall effect of green policies, contributing for the creation of thousands of new jobs in the renewable engineering industry.

The study was published by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) which ranked the UK first among the world’s 12 largest economies, closely followed by Germany, Italy, and Japan, for reducing pollution in industry, transport and buildings.

British Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, Edward Davey, welcomed the International Energy Efficiency Scorecard by the ACEEE, emphasising the importance of low-carbon and renewable initiatives in the UK for future economic growth and sustainable development.

Mr Davey said: “The UK and the leading economies of Europe are now well ahead of the United States when it comes to energy efficiency. This is significant because countries that use energy more efficiently require fewer resources to achieve the same goals, thus reducing costs, preserving valuable natural resources, and creating jobs.”

The 12 largest economies, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia, the United Kingdom, the United States, and the European Union represent over 78 per cent of Global Gross Domestic Product;  63 per cent of global energy consumption; 62 percent of the global carbon-dioxide equivalent emissions.

Author of the report and ACEEE Senior Researcher, Sara Hayes, said that investment in cost- effective energy efficiency can help many countries to strengthen their economic competitiveness and create new jobs in the renewable industry.

Ms Hayes said: “While energy efficiency has played a major role in the economies of developed nations for decades, cost-effective energy efficiency remains a massively underutilized energy resource. Fortunately, there is a lot countries can do to strengthen their economic competitiveness through improvements in energy efficiency.”

OFGEM consults on £22 Billion Upgrade

Around £22 billion allocated to upgrade and renew Britain’s gas and high voltage electricity networks. This will ensure that Britain’s networks remain among the most reliable in the world

Investment is integral to secure Britain’s future energy supplies and is part of the £200 billion identified as part of Ofgem’s Project Discovery regarding security of supply

Ofgem’s close scrutiny of companies’ plans secures project investment and ensures value for consumers

Ofgem is today announcing proposals to upgrade and renew Britain’s electricity and gas networks. These include funding £17 billion of investment with around a further £5 billion potentially available over the course of the price control period (1 April 2013 – 2021).

The majority of the proposed investment, around £15 billion, would include the upgrade and renewal of the high voltage electricity network in England and Wales and the high pressure gas networks across Britain. These networks are operated by National Grid and the package would fund major projects such as new sub-sea electricity cables linking England/Wales and Scotland. The building of these critical infrastructure projects could create around 7,000 jobs, mainly in the construction supply chain.

An estimated £7 billion would help to ensure that our low pressure gas networks, which deliver gas to homes and businesses, remain safe and reliable. The money would fund the continued maintenance across Britain of the gas distribution network, in particular the gas mains replacement programme. In addition, our proposals would enable the gas distribution companies to connect around 80,000 fuel poor households to the gas network. The proposals will also enable funding for companies to develop carbon monoxide awareness initiatives.

Ofgem Chairman, Lord Mogg stated: “As Ofgem’s Project Discovery set out, Britain faces an unprecedented need to invest to replace ageing infrastructure, meet environmental targets and deliver secure supplies. This needs to be carried out at a time of global financial uncertainty, which makes attracting investment difficult but possible.

“In addition, through Ofgem’s RIIO price controls we are driving improvements in company performance to ensure costs are kept as low as possible for consumers by incentivising efficient investment and penalising poor performance. Our ‘vanilla’ weighted average cost of capital of around 4.5% (6.7-7.0% cost of equity) achieves these criteria.”

RIIO has ensured that network companies have stepped up stakeholder engagement with consumers and network users so that they only deliver the investment which is needed. They are then incentivised to deliver this investment as cost effectively as possible.

To further safeguard consumers, Ofgem will only approve the further £5 billion where there is a demonstrable need for the infrastructure, therefore protecting consumers from paying for redundant assets. Following close scrutiny of the plans, Ofgem has reduced the companies’ requested funding by 20%.

The impact of the total RIIO package announced today is estimated to lead to household bills being around £7 higher in 2013, rising to around a £15 increase in 2021. The average increase on annual household bills across the eight years of the price control is around £11 compared to this year.

Good News for the Trades as Three Firms Announce to Build New Homes in Scotland

Three of the leading UK housebuilders are set to build thousands of new homes as part of a major transformational project in Bishopton, South West Scotland, creating new jobs in the building construction sector. 

Taylor Wimpey, CALA and Persimmon have reached an agreement with the defence giant BAE Systems to build around 600 energy efficient homes on the former Royal Ordnance Factory site in Bishopton.

More than 2,500 new homes will be built over the 15-year development programme, making this one of the most exciting property developments taking place in the UK at the moment.

Construction work on the first phase of the £32 million residential development is scheduled to start in September 2012. During its construction phase, the project is expected to create around 4,000 full and part-time employment opportunities for local residents and people in the trades.

Project Director for BAE Systems, Lynda Johnstone, said: “It is testament to the scale and quality of the transformation project that it has sparked the high level of interest from property developers of the calibre of Taylor Wimpey, CALA and Persimmon.

“The multi-million pound regeneration programme will see high quality homes in the area and deliver a new community, which alongside the housing development will include a new primary school, library, community centre, leisure facilities and woodland park to complement the existing friendly, close-knit village feel of Bishopton.”

The regeneration is expected to deliver significant employment and business opportunities with the first homes going on sale in early 2013.

 

 

More than 46,000 jobs London 2012 construction project

Building, Engineering and Construction work of the Olympic Park for London 2012 has raised the public profile of the industry, helping millions of people in Britain to appreciate the importance of civil engineering to society, a survey by a leading engineering body revealed today.

A new survey published by the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) showed that over half of the public (53%) no longer just think about bridges when they think of civil engineering in the light of the London 2012 Olympic Games.

Nearly half of the 2, 000 people who took part in the ComRes survey  said they would consider civil engineering to be a ‘respected’ profession, alongside jobs such as lawyers and teachers.

More than 46,000 jobs have been created as a result of the London 2012 construction project. Post-Olympic work, taking place just after the closing ceremony next month, is expected to create thousands of extra new jobs.

The successful delivery of the £7-billion worth Olympic infrastructure has raised the public profile of civil engineers and people working in the trades.

45% of the people who participated in the survey say they would consider civil engineering to be a ‘respected’ profession, alongside jobs such as lawyers and teachers. Over a third (38%) of the participants said they would encourage their children to pursue a career in civil engineering.

ICE President Richard Coackley said: “Our day-to-day lives depend on the infrastructure around us that is designed, built and maintained by civil engineers – from roads, railways and bridges to energy, water and waste networks.

“It forms the backbone of society and the economy. But unfortunately it is often only when things go wrong that the work of civil engineers is thrust into the media spotlight.

“The London 2012 Games have changed this – showcasing and celebrating the work of these often ‘unsung heroes’ while at the same time helping the public understand more about what civil engineers do and what a diverse and exciting career it is.

“If anything could excite and inspire young people to pursue civil engineering as a career it’s the Olympic and Paralympic Games – a true feat of engineering in every sense.”

More Construction JOBS in South East England

One of the largest providers of affordable housing in the South of England, Sovereign Housing Association, has announced it will build more than 3, 000 new homes over the next four years, paving the way for jobs in the building construction industry.

The ambitious plan will see 1, 064 new homes built by the end of this financial year, 865 of which have been already identified, the housing association confirmed last week. Under Sovereign’s new development strategy at least 276 of the new homes will be for affordable home ownership, forecasting a similar number of homes to be completed in 2013/14.

Development and Commercial Director at Sovereign, Phil Stephens, said: “The top priorities of our development strategy are to ensure that we deliver the HCA Affordable Homes Programme and to play our part in achieving Sovereign’s aim of reaching 50,000 homes by 2015,”

“Our recent successful bond issue has given us the financial strength and flexibility to continue delivering a substantial programme of new homes in our core operating areas in the coming years.”- added Mr Stephens.

It was revealed that Sovereign’s development will include a significant number of shared ownership homes as well as a growing number of market rent properties in key locations.

Mr Stephens commented that there is a definite gap in the market rent properties due to the rising demand from people unable to buy their own homes.

He said: “We will be looking to build on the positive experiences we have had so far letting homes at market rates in the West Country, and not only develop a broader portfolio of properties, but also diversify our revenue streams to enable us to continue providing affordable homes into the future.”