The UK Government has freed up £11 million to help Scotland’s energy entrepreneurs turn their ideas into clean, green technologies.
Energy minister, Anne-Marie Trevelyan today announced the latest round of the Energy Entrepreneurs Fund (EEF), which aims to drive forward the development of low carbon technologies across all sectors of industry.
That includes innovations that boost energy efficiency in homes, reduce emissions and develop green transport, as well as sourcing cleaner ways to generate power and heat.
It forms part of the UK Government’s ambition to reduce greenhouse gases to net zero by 2050 and to “build back better” from Covid-19.
Scotland’s budding energy entrepreneurs are being urged to bid in the EEF, which will support between 15 and 20 projects. Each successful bidder will receive up to £1m.
It’s hoped that successful initiatives could create “hundreds of green jobs” and act as a springboard for millions-of-pounds worth of private sector investment.
Ms Trevelyan said: “From James Watt’s work on the steam engine to Alexander Graham Bell bringing us the telephone, Scotland is famous for its strong entrepreneurial spirit. We want to unleash this talent to drive forward green technologies across the UK, helping the public and businesses cut their carbon footprint.
“The Energy Entrepreneurs Fund is backing the UK’s next generation of inventors and innovators to turn their ideas into reality, with previous successful projects already helping drive down emissions across the country and creating green jobs as we work to build back greener.”
Since 2012, Wesminster’s EEF has awarded £72m worth of grants, supported 156 projects and leveraged more than £500m in private investment.
Previous groups to benefit from the fund include Aberdeen-headquartered Axis Energy Projects, which secured £217,160 to develop an efficient and low-cost method of anchoring floating offshore wind turbines to the seabed.
John Baross, the firm’s managing director, said: “Axis Energy Projects was pleased to have received a grant from the Energy Entrepreneurs Fund. It allowed us to progress our low-cost anchoring method for floating offshore wind turbines not only on the UK Continental Shelf but on a global basis.
“Such was our progress that we can now focus on offshore wind farms and on decarbonising existing and new offshore oil and gas production facilities. This would not have been possible without the grant award.”
David Duguid, Conservative MP for Banff and Buchan and UK Government Minister for Scotland, said: “The UK Government celebrates entrepreneurship. We are committed to rewarding innovation and hard work. Entrepreneurs bring solutions to problems, such as climate change, whilst creating new jobs and supporting our economic recovery from coronavirus.
“With a long history of innovation, it is no surprise Scotland is producing lots of really exciting start ups – including previous Scottish recipients of the Energy Entrepreneurs Fund.
“I encourage Scotland’s energy entrepreneurs to apply for a share of this £11m UK Government funding as we seek to build back better ahead of COP26 in Glasgow later this year.”