Green Skills
National Skills Academy for Manufacturing
Inaugural Lecture
Professor Lord Bhattacharyya
The Scale of the Challenge
• Political Commitment
• “Green New Deal” – 400,000 green jobs
• PM compared challenge to Space race as
• David Miliband compared to Victorian era
innovation – Bazalgette
• New “Industrial Revolution” – Industrial strategy.
• Cross party consensus – Conservatives and Lib
Dems wanted tougher emissions targets.
• Climate Change Committee
• Propose that UK green house emissions be reduced by 34% by
2020 (compared to the 1990 level),
• 21% reduction from 2005 levels
• 1990 target increases to 42% reduction if a deal is done at
• Tyndall centre
• This will not be enough to keep below 2 degrees C increase.
• Offsets?
• EUTS covers half of emissions and CDM will give 140 million
tonnes of emissions
• But short term relief only.
What does it mean?
• CBI target
– 120 million tonnes reduction
of GHG by 2020
• Comparable to:
– 18% Total Carbon Emissions
decline 1970- 2005
• Heavy Industry decline
• End of Deep coal mining
• Coal -->> Gas
• This is only to 2020
UK Carbon emissions 1970-2004
Impact on Manufacturing
• Impacts all companies
– from brewing to automotive
• All areas of business
• All current skill sets
• And… Skill sets we do not yet identify
– Energy consumption
– Driving techniques
Most significant changes?
• RSA National Action Plan
Carbon Producers: Decarbonisation, Supply efficiency,
renewables, carbon sequestration, nuclear, biomass, ITER/JET
– Product manufacturers: Buildings (45% of energy consumpt)
CHP, materials (lightweight, insulation), packaging design,
construction systems.
– Government: Procurement, Infrastructure decisions, projects,
regulations, subsidies,
– Individuals: “Creating and training a ‘carbon army’ of workers to
provide the human resources for a vast environmental
reconstruction programme” New Economics Foundation
Far from where we need to be.
Skills Gap:
– eg Nuclear –
• shortage of inspectors
– Shortage of “core” science
• No increase in Physics, Chem,
Eng graduates
• Over a third STEM graduates in
subjects like architecture,
psychology, sports science etc.
• STEM pipeline issues
– Aging and smaller workforce –
• especially at Technical grades
• Inc Engineers and Eng Tech
decline much greater than
chartered engineers
• Half of firms reporting Mech Eng
Over a third of STEM graduates are in noncore STEM subjects
Engineering: Path to a
greener Britain.
• The practical application of scientific expertise will be at the centre
of the political, social and business agenda for a generation.
• Business opportunity for companies and huge personal opportunity
for engineers.
• Engineering skills must be at heart of Govt “Low Carbon Industrial
We need to put engineering at the heart of
what it is to be British.
New Brunels, new Bazalgettes, new
Armstrongs and new Lucases
How can we do this
• You have to admit uncertainty to deal with it.
• Leitch only mentions “environment” twice!
• Known Knowns
• Nuclear, renewables, transmission needs.
• Roadmaps to future:
– EG Low carbon Vehicles:
Lightweight Materials
Engine efficiency, battery and Hybrid drives
Driver interaction and feedback
Experiential engineering
• Action?
– Technology Roadmaps to 2020
– These will show skills needs and resources needed
But only one part of picture….
• Known Unknowns
• The things we know we don’t know.
• Two Examples: Low Carbon Vehicles:
– What Engine systems will we be using in 20/30 years time?
– What skills will manufacturers and service companies need to manage
them? What impact on Infrastructure needs?
• Regulations
– We know direction of regulation, but beyond 2020 regulatory picture is
unclear. What will/won’t be permissible and how impact skills needs?
• Action?
• “Green” Leitch
– Ensure Core skills have green element
– Ensure school and college leavers have core skills ability to contribute
to engineering challenges of future – putting engineering at centre of
core skills strategy.
We must also prepare for radical
and disruptive changes
• Unknown Unknowns
“the things we don’t yet know we don’t know”
ITER Fusion
Extent of Climate Change effects on
» Water patterns
» Industrial location
– Human population pressures
• Action?
– Fund green engineering research at proper levels
– To exploit disruptive technology – BE OPEN and COLLABORATIVE
A compact solution…
• Government
– Provide a strong science education in Schools
“Greening” Leitch mean science education is core.
– Make careers in Industry more accessible
A far stronger vocational skills system at NVQ levels 2 and 3
an immediate programme of funded graduate internships
– Transform its attitude to applied technology
Technology Strategy Board funding : Partnerships with overseas and UK companies
Huge range of applications – not all will succeed but need support
Funding announced so far is welcome – but still insufficient
Japan: Y1.6 Trillion (£10 Billion) for Environment alone
UK: £500 million (for all industrial support)
A compact solution…
• Industry
• Preaching to converted: Work of IMechE and National Skills Academy
• But worth restating.
– Invest in research in exciting new technologies
• UK R&D investment historically low (excl Aerospace and Pharma_
• Must change if we are to
– Offer good reward packages
• First time in a generation competitive with Financial Services!
• Give people chance to share in wealth creation- “Silicon Valley reward
packages” that reward value creation.
– Invest in skills of workers
• Superior skills are business advantage, an a global competitive necessity
A compact solution…
• Academic and learning community
– Supporting employer based learning
• “through apprenticeships, day release programmes, in work training
and the provision of basic skills to adults.
– Simplifying funding and access.
• Current arrangements far too complex
• Restructure to allow local innovation and funding simplicity- along
lines of innovation white paper model.
– Universities must open to partnership.
• Integrate Undergraduate and graduate study into professional careers
• Joint research programmes and long term partnerships.
Ways to skill a green future
• “Green Leitch” by focussing on green skills and core STEM issues
• Simplify skills funding system so innovative companies can access
• Support business investment in green engineering skills at low and
intermediate levels
• Government Focus on level 2 & 3 core skills shortages
• Open up our businesses and universities to collaboration with
overseas innovators and students
• Make careers in manufacturing more accessible; via internships and
graduate opportunities
• Increase manufacturing spending on R&D
• Supporting private investment with massively increased applied
technology funding
• Transform manufacturing reward packages so it is those with the
skills to create value who can reap the greatest reward

Green Skills IMechE National Skills Academy for Manufacturing Inaugural Lecture