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Research finds potential for 30,000 new jobs in green recovery with investment in electricity network

31/08/2020

Around 30,000 new jobs could be created along with wider economic benefits if substantial investment in upgrading the energy network is made to enable the transition to electric vehicles across the UK, according to a new study.

The research, carried out by the University of Strathclyde’s Centre for Energy Policy supported by SP Energy Networks, examined the wider impacts of the extended and substantial investment in network upgrades required to enable 99% electric vehicle (EV) uptake by 2050 in the UK.

It shows that the transition to EVs through to 2050 could deliver an additional 30,000 FTE roles across the UK, an increase of 0.16% GDP per annum as well as an increase in wages (+0.1%).

The majority of jobs created will be in the network, construction and service sector supply chains. Many of the roles created will be related to EV manufacturing, from developers of bodywork to delivery drivers for the companies producing EV parts.

Accelerating the uptake of EVs will be crucial in reducing the emissions given off by petrol and diesel cars and help meet the UK Government’s Net Zero targets.

Investment will be required to ensure the infrastructure can be put in place to support the increase in EV drivers expected in the coming years to help meet these targets.

Scott Mathieson, Director of Network Planning and Regulation at SP Energy Networks, said: “Increased uptake of electric vehicles can lead to economic prosperity with sustained benefits to the UK economy.

“Investment in upgrades to the electricity network to enable this EV transition can create up to 30,000 new full-time, high-quality jobs and will have an immediate and sustained positive effect on GDP.

“Our work is far more than just keeping the lights on. Investing in EV infrastructure and adoption of EVs will help shift a post-COVID 19 economy onto a pathway for a green economic recovery.

“This robust analysis demonstrates why providing the right environment for greater investment in the infrastructure to support EVs now is so crucial to creating a much-needed economic stimulus and enabling the UK to meet Net Zero targets. By working together, we can help develop a better future, quicker.”

SP Energy Networks is leading the way when it comes to developing the green recovery and recently unveiled its Project Charge transport model to drive investment in EV infrastructure as well as its world-leading Zero Carbon Communities tool, which helps enable local communities to develop clean, green energy projects.

Professor Karen Turner, Director of the Centre for Energy Policy at the University of Strathclyde, said: “The UK has set binding targets to meet net zero emissions by 2050 and transport is one of the key sectors where emissions will have to significantly reduce.

“One of the key questions that remains for regulators and policy makers, is how and when the required infrastructure upgrades to the electricity networks will be invested and paid for, which will have important implications for just how the rollout more generally impacts across the wider economy.

“Our economic analysis shows that the switch to electric vehicles through to 2050 could ultimately deliver sustained benefits across the wider economy, with the extent and nature of gains depending very much on the economic and policy conditions. ”

SP Energy Networks is committed to helping the country on its journey to recovery from the COVID-19 outbreak and a more sustainable future. Green recovery and investment in renewable energy is at the heart of the country’s economic recovery, providing a driving force that will help drive forward towards net zero ambitions.

For more information, please contact Fraser Clarke at Stripe Communications by calling 07582 453 633 or email spnetworks@stripecommunications.com

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