Keele University helping prepare Staffordshire for net zero future
- Keele is working alongside Staffordshire County Council to help the county prepare for the opportunities of the transition to a net zero future.
- The team will seek to identify barriers relating to supply chains and skills that currently impede the county from transitioning to net zero, and how these can be addressed.
- This will then be used to inform future decision making for investment and resource allocation to secure a skilled supply chain, ensuring that all stakeholders can make the most of the economic benefits of the transition.
Transitioning to a sustainable future
Sustainability experts from Keele University are working alongside Staffordshire County Council to help accelerate the county’s transition to net zero and ensure the county’s businesses and skilled workers can stay competitive throughout the transition to a sustainable future.
Thanks to new funding from Innovate UK, the team led by the County Council and with Keele University’s involvement led by Professor Zoe Robinson will seek to identify barriers relating to supply chains and skills that currently impede the county from transitioning to net zero, and how these can be addressed.
This will not only accelerate the county’s journey to net zero by 2050 in line with Government plans, but will help to create new jobs and a supply chain that positions the county as a leader in sustainability and green technology.
Reaping economic rewards
This project focuses on developing the underpinning knowledge to address challenges around current skills, capabilities and capacity, and local supply chains that will enable Staffordshire to decarbonise at the rate required to meet the UK’s 2050 net zero target.
As well as creating a detailed “net zero supply chain” roadmap, demonstrating what needs to be done for the county to decarbonise, the researchers will also create an associated net zero skills road map and audit of existing net zero skills provision in the county, to identify not only what skills and businesses will be needed for the net zero transition, but to identify the current gaps in the county’s portfolio.
This will then be used to inform future decision making for investment and resource allocation to secure a skilled supply chain, ensuring that all stakeholders can make the most of the economic benefits of the transition.
Delivering the county’s net zero future
Professor Zoe Robinson, Director of Keele’s Institute for Sustainable Futures, said: “We are delighted to be working with Staffordshire County Council to address the twin challenges of ensuring a local supply chain and the skills, capability and capacity to deliver a net zero future for the county.
“These are challenges experienced in every part of the UK, and this project which draws on existing strong partnership working between Keele University’s diverse academic expertise and the County Council, as well as other key stakeholders in the county, will help position Staffordshire at the forefront of tackling these crucial barriers to ensure a more sustainable future for all.”
Staffordshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Environment, Infrastructure and Climate Change, Simon Tagg added: "This partnership between Staffordshire County Council and Keele University demonstrates our commitment to addressing the challenges we face in reaching to net zero. By identifying and addressing barriers in skills and supply chains, we aim not only to meet national targets but also to pave the way for our county to become a leader in sustainability. This collaboration isn't just about change; it's about creating new opportunities and securing a stronger future for everyone."
Professor Mark Ormerod, Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Provost at Keele University, added: “I’m delighted to see this successful collaborative bid from Staffordshire County Council and Keele University to the Innovate UK Net Zero Living initiative, which highlights both the University’s and County Council’s commitment to working in partnership to make Staffordshire a genuine leader in the transition to a low carbon society, as well as the University’s academic expertise in sustainability.”
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