Boris unveils £12bn plan creating thousands of new jobs for Britain’s ‘prosperous future’

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The Prime Minister on Wednesday will set out a 10-point programme for environmentally-friendly energy and transport in the effort to wipe out the country’s contribution to climate change by 2050. Boris Johnson will promise a surge in high-skilled jobs based in the UK’s industrial heartlands in the North East, Yorkshire and the Humber, West Midlands, Scotland and Wales. Key initiatives will include Government investment in offshore wind farms, hydrogen powers, electric cars, nuclear energy and host of other high-tech initiatives.

Ambitious targets including banning the sale of new petrol and diesel cars and cars by 2030 will also be set, along with the eventual phasing out of diesel lorries.

Motorists will be offered more than £500million in grants to encourage to switch to ultra low carbon vehicles.

Officials predict the huge injection of cash will encourage private investment in green worth more than £36billion by the end of the decade.

Ahead of the announcement, the Prime Minister said: “Although this year has taken a very different path to the one we expected, I haven’t lost sight of our ambitious plans to level up across the country.

“My Ten Point Plan will create, support and protect hundreds of thousands of green jobs, whilst making strides towards net zero by 2050.

“Our green industrial revolution will be powered by the wind turbines of Scotland and the North East, propelled by the electric vehicles made in the Midlands and advanced by the latest technologies developed in Wales, so we can look ahead to a more prosperous, greener future.”

Mr Johnson’s plan will be seen by Tory MPs as the first step in refreshing the Government after the departure of his chief strategy adviser Dominic Cummings last week.

The Prime Minister, currently self-isolating in Downing Street after a meeting with an MP who later tested positive for coronavirus, is keen to show his ambitions for transforming the country have not been blown off course by the pandemic.

He also wants to demonstrate his commitment to “build back better” and “build back greener” in the economic recovery from the health crisis.

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His “green industrial revolution” blueprint comes ahead of the COP26 climate summit of world leaders in Glasgow next year.

The 10-point plan includes:

  • Offshore wind: Producing enough offshore wind to power every home, quadrupling how much we produce to 40GW by 2030, supporting up to 60,000 jobs.
  • Hydrogen: Working with industry with an aim to generate 5GW of low carbon hydrogen production capacity by 2030 for industry, transport, power and homes, and aiming to develop the first town heated entirely by hydrogen by the end of the decade.
  • Nuclear: Advancing nuclear as a clean energy source, across large scale nuclear and developing the next generation of small and advanced reactors, which could support 10,000 jobs.
  • Electric vehicles: Backing car manufacturing in the West Midlands, North East and North Wales to accelerate the transition to electric vehicles, and transforming the country’s national infrastructure to better support electric vehicles.
  • Public transport, cycling and walking: Making cycling and walking more attractive ways to travel and investing in zero-emission public transport of the future.
  • Jet Zero and greener maritime: Supporting difficult-to-decarbonise industries to become greener through research projects for zero-emission planes and ships.
  • Homes and public buildings: Making homes, schools and hospitals greener, warmer and more energy efficient, whilst creating 50,000 jobs by 2030, and a target to install 600,000 heat pumps every year by 2028.
  • Carbon capture: Seeking to make the UK a world-leader in technology to capture and store harmful emissions away from the atmosphere, with a target to remove 10MT of carbon dioxide by 2030, equivalent to all emissions of the industrial Humber today.
  • Nature: Protecting and restoring our natural environment, planting 30,000 hectares of trees every year, whilst creating and retaining thousands of jobs.
  • Innovation and finance: Developing the cutting-edge technologies needed to reach these new energy ambitions and make the City of London the global centre of green finance.

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To deliver his plan, Mr Johnson will today unveil a series of new investment projects including in cutting-edge carbon capture, usage and storage technology.

He will promise an extra £200 million of new funding to create two carbon capture clusters by the mid-2020s with a further two set to be created by 2030.

A further £500 million will be pledged for hydrogen heating and cooking technology.

Targets are being set for the establishment of the country’s first hydrogen powered neighbourhood by 2023, followed by a village in 2025 and an entire town by the end of the decade.

A total of £525million will be earmarked to develop large and smaller-scale nuclear plants and research and develop new advanced modular reactors.

Mr Johnson will also promise £1.3 billion to accelerate the rollout of charge points for electric vehicles at homes, on streets and on motorways across England.

Consumers will be offered £582 million in grants for buying zero or ultra-low emission vehicles to make them cheaper to buy and incentivise more people to make the transition.

Nearly £500 million is to be spent in the next four years for the development and mass-scale production of electric vehicle batteries.

Ministers are to launch a consultation on the phasing out of new diesel heavy goods vehicles, although no date has yet been set.

Other announcements today include the promise of £1 billion next year for making new and existing homes and public buildings including schools and hospitals more energy efficient.

A total of £20 million is to be provided for a competition to develop clean maritime technology including at sites on Orkney and at Teesside.

Other key parts of the plan include a £1 billion energy innovation fund, £5 billion for alternative greener ways of travel including cycling, walking, and buses, and £5.2 billion to create for new flood and coastal defences in England by 2027.

In response, Greenpeace spokeswoman Rebecca Newsom said: “This landmark announcement signals the end of the road for polluting cars and vans and a historic turning point on climate action.”

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