ESS EXPO launches green skills gap webinar

22nd April 2024
Harry Fowle

ESS EXPO has announced the launch of a webinar aimed at addressing critical skills shortages in the environmental sector.

With demand currently outstripping supply, the online event entitled ‘ESS 2050: Green Skills’ will focus on how employers can bridge the gap in green jobs across the nation.

Taking place on Friday 26 April from 12:00-14:00, the webinar will feature presentations and discussions on government initiatives, apprenticeship schemes, regional differences, and collaborations between UK universities and the industry. It will also offer businesses practical steps to train the next generation, strategies to make the sector more attractive to the younger generations, and collaborative solutions to address green skills shortages. 

The webinar will be co-hosted by Groundwork, the official charity partner of ESS Expo, and chaired by Adam Read, Chief Sustainability & External Affairs Officer of SUEZ and member of the Green Jobs Delivery Group.

Joining the session will be leading industry voices Melissa Vogeley, Team Leader - Green Jobs & Skills for Net Zero at the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero and Aashya Zina, Department for Education, providing an update on the Green Jobs Delivery Group.

Sally Hayns, CEO of The Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management (CIEEM) will address Barriers to Nature-based Green Jobs, while Beth Whittaker, Chief Human Resources Officer of Veolia Northern Europe Zone, will deliver a case study on Future Talent to Deliver GreenUp. The former will look at overcoming certain challenges to support the expansion of a committed, engaged workforce, while the latter will explore future talent including graduates, apprentices, and internships, as well as green skills planning for future roles and over 50s talent.

Venetia Knight, Head of Employment and Enterprise at charity, Groundwork, will present on Increasing the Attractiveness of Sector to young people, followed by a joint session from Dr. Aris Alexoulis, Senior Lecturer in Mechatronics at Manchester Metropolitan University, and Dr Steve Jones, Connected Curriculum Lead at Siemens, on the Connected Curriculum: How Academia and Industry can Collaborate on Education. The Siemens Connected Curriculum is a collaborative partnership that equips member universities with an extensive portfolio of technology learning materials and real-world industrial case studies covering all aspects of the product lifecycle.

Commenting on the webinar, Rob Mowat, Managing Director of ESS Expo, said: “We are excited to be launching the first in our new series of webinars. ESS 2050: Green Skills is a unique opportunity for operators, local authorities, agriculture, energy, manufacturing, and stakeholders from education and development to engage in a conversation crucial for shaping the future of the environmental workforce. We have already received a remarkable amount of interest in this opportunity and are looking forward to sharing the debate with all those involved in the sector on 26 April.”

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