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The Government today underscored its commitment to the green economy with two major investments in renewable energy technology (May 26th)

Business Secretary Vince Cable announced the start of a competition to form an Offshore Renewable Energy technology and innovation centre. The new centre will focus on technologies for offshore wind, wave and tidal power.

The Government has committed more than £200 million over the next four years to establish an elite network of at least six technology and innovation centres. The centres allow businesses to access equipment and expertise to help them commercialise new and emerging technology - and will help them capture a share of the global market.

Vince Cable said:

“The UK is a world leader in offshore engineering and our reputation makes us an excellent location for research in this area.

“In creating an Offshore Renewable Energy technology and innovation centre we are taking the next step to transforming the UK into a low carbon economy.There is a clear opportunity for the Government to support the UK’s offshore industry and this centre will be of great benefit to the sector and the economy.”

“The Government is committed to greening the economy – and despite the difficult financial challenges we face, we have already achieved a great amount, such as a vision for a Green Investment Bank and a commitment to world leading carbon reduction.”

Universities and Science Minister David Willetts said:

“The Government’s continued investment in technology and innovation centres ensure the UK stays at the forefront of global innovation and technology.

“It is vital we invest in renewable energy now to gain maximum benefits in the future. There is huge potential for growth in the sector, and the prospect to generate billions of pounds for the economy whilst creating thousands of job opportunities at the same time.”

Chief Executive of the Technology Strategy Board Iain Gray said:

“Today’s announcement of the Offshore Renewable Energy technology and innovation centre follows earlier announcements about centres in High Value Manufacturing and Cell Therapy.

“These centres will be a vital part of the UK’s innovation landscape and enable world leading businesses to emerge in these areas.

“Our strategy published today highlights 10 possible areas from which a further three centres will be selected in the near future.”

Vince Cable also announced today that £20 million will now be invested into two clean technology funds; Zouk Cleantech 2 and HG Capital Renewable Power Partners 2, as part of the £325 million UK Innovation Investment Fund (UKIIF).

The funds will support innovative businesses with high growth potential that are raising equity finance. The money will then flow into companies working on:

  • Alternative energy generation;
  • Renewable energy infrastructure including wind farms;
  • Energy efficiency; and
  • Water treatment and conservation.

Vince Cable said:

“The Government is committed to increasing investment in clean technologies to support innovation and growth. This funding provides the support to allow private sector industries to grow and for them to become more energy efficient. Transforming the UK into a low carbon economy is a great challenge, but one that we are taking seriously with investments such as this.”

Source: Department for Business, Innovation and Skills

Written by Matthew Abbott
Thursday, 26 May 2011 13:01

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