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UK recruitment agency Reed tackles green retrofitting skills gap with new training venture

Keeping buildings heated contributes over a fifth of the UK's greenhouse gas emissions. It doesn't help that the country has Europe's oldest and most inefficient housing stock. To reach a national Net Zero target by 2050, gas boilers need to be phased out, and installation of heat pumps accelerated. That, in turn, requires qualified workers.

Reed, one of Britain's largest recruitment specialists, has just launched Reed Environment to bridge the green skills gap. Research by the firm determined that "the current rates of retrofit recruitment must triple if the country is to meet its 2050 Net Zero target. If these rates don't increase, then the UK won't achieve its target number of energy efficient installations to meet its Net Zero goal until 2105."

Reed Environment plans to counter that delay by introducing over 1,000 new retrofitting professionals annually, marking a 94% increase over current recruitment levels. The move could speed up the eco-renovation revolution essential for the UK's environmental objectives while simultaneously creating significant economic opportunities; the sector has considerable potential to create local jobs in economically marginalized areas where the energy efficiency of homes is notably lacking. PWC has calculated that each 'green' retrofit job could result in 1.7 to 5.3 additional jobs.

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Making homes more energy-efficient doesn't just create jobs and keep the climate crisis from getting worse. It can alleviate fuel poverty, which affects millions of UK households, since retrofits drastically reduce heating costs. Housing is also a crucial factor in people's health. As reported by Reed, it's estimated that the UK's National Health Service spends at least GBP 2.5 billion each year "treating illnesses derived from people's living conditions, a high proportion of which are directly linked to living in cold and damp homes."

Could you position your company to benefit from — and expand — the green revolution's positive ripple effects on people around the world?

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