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Britain’s manufacturing industry must feature in Build Back Greener initiatives

Community
Community
6th October 2020

Today, in a speech to Conservative Party Conference, Boris Johnson announced that he plans to make the UK a ‘world leader’ in wind energy. As part of these ‘Build Back Greener’ plans, Johnson has said that all UK homes will be powered by wind energy by 2030.

Community are arguing that we must use Britain’s manufacturing industry within these infrastructure projects to make that transition.

Alasdair McDiarmid, Operations Director at Community, said:

“Boris Johnson’s aspiration to make the UK a world leader in wind energy is welcome, but to deliver this he needs to lead from the front. As a top priority his words must be matched with an overhaul of the way government contracts are awarded to ensure it is UK workers and supply chains that will benefit from any new investment.

The recent decision to award a contract to China to produce steel jackets for the Seagreen windfarm, overlooking a strong bid from local firm Bifab, is an outrage that must be reconsidered. Those jackets should be built by British workers using steel produced in Scunthorpe and rolled at the Dalzell plate mill in Motherwell.

Shipping steel products from China costs fifty times as much carbon as sourcing content from the UK, making a mockery of investing in clean energy. Government must make environmental and social considerations central to procurement tendering processes. It’s not rocket science to say a green industrial strategy should protect the environment and provide value to the taxpayer by supporting British jobs.”

Community is the union for steelworkers. You can join us here.

Community are running a campaign about the future of Britain’s steel industry which calls on government to procure Britain’s steel for big infrastructure projects. Sign the petition here.