“The race to net-zero is on. The future of the UK’s post-pandemic economy hinges on its ability to scale up capacity across low carbon industries at pace. Today, the West Midlands – the birthplace of the first industrial revolution – is already recognised at the frontier of next generation transport technologies; we are uniquely positioned to advance Government’s 10 Point Plan for a Greener Industrial Revolution and welcome these steps with open arms.
“Anchored by world-leading manufacturers including Jaguar Land Rover (JLR), Aston Martin, Lotus and LEVC, the West Midlands’ long-standing expertise in transport R&D has created a fertile climate for low carbon innovation and commercialisation. From battery and hydrogen fuel cell technology, to energy storage, Very Light Rail and Electric Vehicles; the collaborative mindset of the region’s public, private and academic sectors sets us apart as a pioneer in world-first innovation.
“This expertise has spurred a clustering effect in the West Midlands; our region is home to a number of facilities across Birmingham, the Black Country and Coventry and Warwickshire that are supporting decarbonisation at a national and international level. Aptly crowned as the UK’s first Future Mobility Zone (FMZ), the region is the proud home of the UK Battery Industrialisation Centre (UKBIC), Warwick Manufacturing Group (WMG) and the National Automotive Innovation Centre (NAIC); all institutions that are called upon from across the globe. This growing demand transcends our infrastructure expertise, too, as Wolverhampton’s National Brownfield Institute accelerates circular economy principles in the construction of buildings and homes.
“It is clear from the Government’s 10 Point Plan that the power to unlock a greener, more sustainable and inclusive economy before 2050 lies with the UK’s regions. Harnessing the West Midlands’ expertise in low-carbon technologies across energy, transport and infrastructure is integral to a second wave of industrial revolution - just as integral as our expertise was the first time. In the process, we will support government’s wider levelling up ambitions by working in partnership with key departments, including the new and welcome Office for Investment, to showcase the West Midlands and the UK as a globally competitive destination for investment.
“This preclusive plan gives us a clear steer on how our region can deliver a transition to greener industries; we look forward to receiving more detail from Government on policy provisions in the coming weeks.”
Read the full 10 Point Plan here.