City leaders launch net zero construction skills drive

Grant Prior 1 month ago
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The Skills for a Sustainable Skyline Taskforce will meet for the first time today in a bid to avert a construction labour crisis across central London.

The City of London Corporation launched the three-year initiative in response to skills gaps in the construction, retrofit and maintenance of low-carbon commercial buildings which emerged from recent research.

It found 91% of respondents in a poll of industry professionals said the commercial built environment sector lacks sufficient skilled workers to achieve net zero targets.

Policy Chairman at the City Corporation and Chairman of the Skills for a Sustainable Skyline Taskforce, Chris Hayward, said: “We want to safeguard London’s reputation as a world-leading built environment centre, and that can only be achieved through the transition to net zero.

“In the capital, construction and maintenance of our existing buildings accounts accounting for around 40% of our carbon footprint.

“The skills gap and labour shortage are threats to our net zero ambitions. The Skills for a Sustainable Skyline Taskforce will seek to address this urgent challenge.

“We must place the environment at the heart of our labour market and our labour market at the heart of our environment.”

The taskforce will deliver an industry engagement campaign to upskill the current workforce and attract new candidates, in particular from groups who are under-represented in the sector.

Chief Executive of the City Property Association and Deputy Chairman of the Skills for a Sustainable Skyline Taskforce, Charles Begley, said: “The built environment must work collaboratively to futureproof our workforce as well as addressing arguably the biggest barrier to delivery – the chronic shortage of skills in the sector, particularly around sustainability and green skills.

“This is a significant project involving over 100 organisations, including employers, training providers, national and local government. Working collaboratively, we can and must bring about change.”

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