Skip to main content

Training: Environment Protection

Question for Department for Education

UIN 35816, tabled on 19 July 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if he will make it his policy to introduce a fully funded re-training programme to support people to re-train in new jobs in response to the transition to a green economy.

Answered on

26 July 2021

In November 2020, the government established the Green Jobs Taskforce, comprising individuals from industry, academia, unions and the education and skills sector. It was tasked with assembling evidence on the skills needed in the green economy and setting out independent recommendations for how government, industry and a wide range of stakeholders might work together to meet the green skills challenge and grasp the opportunities presented by the transition to net zero.

The taskforce’s final report was published on 14 July. We will consider its recommendations carefully ahead of setting out, later in the year, our Net Zero Strategy.

In England, the reforms to the skills system set out in the recently published Skills for Jobs white paper provide the foundation on which we can build. This programme of reform, which places employers at the centre of our technical education system, includes the introduction of new T Levels, flexible apprenticeships, Skills Bootcamps and occupational traineeships. Earlier in the year, we marked a major milestone in the Lifetime Skills Guarantee, with the rollout of almost 400 qualifications which are now available and fully funded for any adult who has not already achieved a level 3 (A level equivalent) qualification. We will ensure that these programmes include supporting more people to get the skills they need to move into green jobs and consider where we might need to go further or faster to fill identified skills gaps.

We are already making progress. The Skills Bootcamps will, from July this year, support flexible training in key green sectors such as construction and nuclear. A Green Apprenticeship Advisory Panel is identifying existing apprenticeships that best support green career pathways and our Free Courses for Jobs offer is supporting more adults to study fully funded qualifications in subject areas crucial for green jobs, such as construction, forestry and engineering. The new Emerging Skills Electrification Project will foresight cutting-edge skills in the battery/electrification sector, develop short, modular content to meet the needs of employers and upskill the teaching workforce.