Powering energy security
A collaborative Midlands approach to shaping national policy
Energy security is a national policy priority and is critical to inclusive, sustainable growth in the Midlands. In particular, energy security is critical for the high concentration of energy intensive sectors like advanced manufacturing and aggregates which make up a disproportionately large part of our regional economy. It offers economic opportunity for our businesses and innovators who are helping drive the UK’s transition to net zero through exceptional energy infrastructure like the ~5GW Humber Offshore Wind Cluster and STEP Fusion Power Plant. Finally, it is key to levelling up for our communities who experience some of the highest rates of fuel poverty in the country.
The Midlands Engine Partnership is now looking to develop a Midlands Energy Security White Paper that can inform and help shape national policy and investment so that they are fully cognisant of the Midlands context and opportunity– for national and regional benefit.
The Midlands Engine Partnership is a unique and powerful collaboration between the region’s businesses, universities, local and combined authorities, LEPs and MPs. Together, we make sure the Midlands’ voice is heard and act as a positive agent for economic, social and environmental change to benefit every single part of our region.
This White Paper will build on the work of our 2021 Ten Point Plan for Green Growth. Developed with input and leadership from over 300 partners from every part of the Midlands, this Plan sets out our regional ambition to drive sustainable economic growth in the Midlands, setting out where the Partnership could collaborate to add value, connect and amplify our region’s green growth leadership.
The Midlands Energy Security White Paper will evidence and demonstrate:
- The significance of the Midlands to the UK’s transition to a secure, low carbon energy system, and the achievement of related national policy priorities, particularly economic growth, net zero and levelling up.
- The specific scope, nature and scale of the opportunities in the Midlands to support the energy transition and UK energy security.
- The challenges and barriers to realising these opportunities, including barriers to private investment, and the risks of not realising them
- What national policies, policy mechanisms and investment decisions can do to enable the opportunities in the Midlands to be realised – particularly as regards unlocking private sector investment.
- How government, industry and other partners need to work together to achieve this – including a high-level ‘route map’ for collaborative action.
The development of the White Paper will be led by a pan-regional Midlands Engine Energy Security Taskforce. This will comprise industry leaders, leading experts and senior representatives from local government, all geared towards ensuring that evidence, policy proposals and the suggested routemap are given a robust regional focus.
It will be chaired by cross bench peer The Lord Daniel Ravensdale and the Midlands Engine Green Growth Board, chaired by Professor Martin Freer, will maintain oversight of the White Paper’s development and deployment.
Membership of the Taskforce is by invitation-only.
Taskforce members will be expected to bring insights and expertise around the opportunities and challenges as regards energy security in the Midlands and to be involved in the shaping of the White Paper proposals and recommendations to national policy-makers in government.
This activity will primarily take place over the course of three Taskforce meetings:
Meeting 1: Introductory Meeting (February 2024)
Meeting 2: White Paper Development (April 2024)
Meeting 3: Finalisation of the White Paper (May 2024)