Greater Manchester has launched a new training academy to provide over a thousand residents with retrofitting skills to ensure the city-region’s homes and buildings are fit for a low-carbon future as part of a commitment to becoming carbon-neutral by 2038.
European Social Funding of £1.1 million has been awarded to Low Carbon Academy, part of North West Skills Academy, by Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) to train and upskill over a thousand individuals to retrofit buildings across Greater Manchester.
The funding will enable the launch of the Retrofit Skills Hub. Delivered by North West Skills Academy along with partners The Retrofit Academy, The Manchester College, Oldham College and Fabric, 1,140 people will get access to training to ensure all Greater Manchester homes and buildings are fit for a low-carbon future.
The training has been designed to help support a sustainable economy as the city-region recovers from the pandemic, while also meeting Greater Manchester’s target of achieving carbon neutrality by 2038, 12 years ahead of the national target.
Andy Burnham, Mayor of Greater Manchester, said:
Training and upskilling construction workers is the first step in moving towards a greener and low carbon city-region, and we are really looking forward to working alongside The Low Carbon Academy and their partners to make this a reality.
“If we want to achieve our goal of a carbon-neutral Greater Manchester by 2038 it is vital we have a workforce that can successfully future-proof our homes and businesses. Our plans to retrofit properties across the city-region on a mass scale will create thousands of new green jobs for residents. What’s more, if we get our response to the climate crisis right, we can take effective action to tackle the jobs crisis and housing crisis at the same time. By prioritising areas where housing quality is lowest, we can make homes cheaper to run and help cut fuel poverty, ultimately improving quality of life for thousands of people in our city-region.”
Cllr Andrew Western, GMCA lead for Digital, Works, Skills and Clean Air, said:
This is the first skills commission of Greater Manchester’s Skills for Growth Programme, and is an example of the city-region responding to the needs of residents and businesses to upskill our workforce.
“Thousands of buildings will require upgrading if Greater Manchester is to achieve its net zero carbon ambition. It’s going to take a large and skilled workforce to carry work out on this scale, and that is why we are putting the funding in place to ensure our buildings will be fit for the future.”
The funding package is part of Greater Manchester’s Skills for Growth Programme which has been designed to fill occupational skills gaps identified by employers. The Retrofit Skills Hub is the first of many skills commissions taking place following consultation with employers who have identified skills gaps in a number of industries.