Midlands Energy Security Taskforce aims to unlock Midlands’ vast energy potential, empowering national energy security, economic resilience and growth

Date posted: April 29, 2024
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Members of the Midlands Engine Energy Security Taskforce

29th April – This week sees the launch of the Midlands Energy Security Taskforce, signifying a commitment to harness the Midlands’ energy potential for the benefit of both the region and the country.

The UK is undergoing a profound energy transition towards a more decentralised, low-carbon system. This creates a significant economic opportunity for the UK and the Midlands: to be the place where we invent and manufacture future technologies of generation and storage, and to support our communities to benefit from the new jobs and opportunities that will arise.

The Midlands is at the heart of the UK’s energy landscape, boasting a significant share of the nation’s energy infrastructure, including renewable sources such as offshore wind and hydrogen. A focal point for UK energy innovation, the region is home to groundbreaking ventures like STEP Fusion, the UK Battery Industrialisation Centre, the Energy Catapults, Tyseley Energy Park and the work of Rolls-Royce in Small Modular Reactors. Alongside strong partnerships such as Energy Capital and the Midlands Net Zero Hub – exemplifying the region’s leadership in collaboration, research, innovation and highly specialised technologies.

At the very heart of the nation’s energy ecosystem, the Midlands plays a vital role in connecting energy networks across the UK. The region’s strategic location and established infrastructure make it an ideal location for initiatives aimed at decarbonising transport and industrial processes, such as electrification, biofuels, hydrogen and sustainable aviation fuels.

Leveraging a rich industrial heritage and robust energy infrastructure, the Midlands possesses a wealth of skills and capabilities that can be tapped to drive energy initiatives – bolstering UK energy security and resilience, and providing exceptional opportunities for investment and economic growth.

Investing in the Midlands now will be vital for unlocking unparalleled national opportunities in the future – catalysing job creation, economic growth and technological innovation. By acknowledging and supporting the region’s potential, the government can pave the way for pioneering advancements that will carve out a distinctive energy landscape, helping to ensure the UK’s future prosperity.

Chaired by crossbench peer Lord Ravensdale and comprising key figures from government, industry and academia, the Midlands Energy Security Taskforce aims to identify barriers to energy resilience in the Midlands, develop clear priorities to overcome them and advocate for policy changes.

Pivotal to the Taskforce’s efforts to shape the future of energy in the Midlands and the UK will be The Midlands Energy Security White Paper. This comprehensive document will outline the region’s energy landscape and propose actionable recommendations for policymakers, investors and stakeholders, providing a roadmap for addressing challenges and capitalising on opportunities – a foundation for bold regional and national economic growth ambitions.

Lord Ravensdale, Chair of the Midlands Energy Security Taskforce, commented: “The Midlands is uniquely positioned to lead the charge towards a more secure, sustainable, and prosperous energy future. Through collaboration and innovation, we will harness the region’s potential to drive economic growth, protect the environment and ensure energy security for generations to come.”

Sir John Peace, Chairman of the Midlands Engine, emphasised the significance of collaboration which the Taskforce will enable: The Midlands has all the necessary assets and expertise to not only drive its own economic growth, but also to bolster UK energy security and economic resilience. The Midlands Engine Partnership is a testament to the power of collaboration. By joining forces, we can amplify our impact and drive positive change, benefiting every part of our region and powering national economic growth.”

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