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Greater Manchester is one of three combined authorities to receive funding as part of a pilot programme to drive investment in net zero.
Greater Manchester Combined Authority and the West Midlands Combined Authority will each host a Local Net Zero Accelerator pilot, giving local administrations the power to allocate a combined £19 million in funding. Investment can be used to support multiple green projects where they can benefit local communities in areas such as energy, housing and transport.
A smaller £2 million project will also be launched in the York and North Yorkshire Combined Authority, replicating a public-private green energy scheme first trialled in Bristol, which supported around 1,000 jobs.
The Local Net Zero Accelerator aims to help local councils attract private sector investment into smaller net zero initiatives. Projects could include housing retrofit and renewable energy and transport projects, such as installing solar panels, battery storage and deploying green buses. The outcomes of pilot programmes will be used to support a successful rollout of the funding to other local authorities in England.
Minister for Energy Efficiency and Green Finance, Lord Callanan, said:
“The UK is a world leader when it comes to tackling climate change. But the work we do locally is just as important for cutting emissions and delivering net zero.
“These pilots will help combined authorities to unlock private sector investment that they can spend on green projects they see fit locally, whether that be retrofitting housing or investing in green public transport networks – all while supporting skilled jobs, building out supply chains and growing our economy.“
Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury, Gareth Davies, said:
“Our £19 million investment is helping local governments explore new ways to fast-track our ambitious net zero objectives.
“This initiative is pivotal in mobilising the money we need to transition and boosting green jobs and investments across the country.“
Green City Lead for Greater Manchester, Cllr Tom Ross, said:
“We welcome the £7 million funding to accelerate our net zero ambitions across Greater Manchester over the next 2 years. Greater Manchester has established Local Area Energy Plans which identify the £12.5 billion of investment in infrastructure required, that is substantially under local authorities influence, to achieve our carbon neutral ambitions by 2038.
“This Accelerator funding from government will be used to design investment models to attract private investment – which is scalable, replicable and which leads to securing investment partners capable of delivering at scale.”