Centrica has made a commitment to recruit and train around 3,500 apprentices over the next 10 years to support the UK economy in providing the green skills required to deliver the net zero goal.
The apprentices will receive technical skills training and the knowledge they need for the job at one of the British Gas training academies in Dartford, Hamilton, Thatcham and Leicester.
Once qualified as ‘Smart Energy Experts’, they will be upskilled to install and maintain carbon-efficient technologies, including EV charging points, heat pumps, hydrogen boilers and provide energy efficiency advice to customers.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson welcomed the news as he visited the British Gas Training Academy in Leicester with Chancellor Rishi Sunak and unveiled the 500th British Gas electric van, marking what is claimed to be the UK’s largest EV fleet.
Two new British Gas electric vans will travel from John O-Groats to Land’s End this week visiting key cities, including Glasgow, Salford, Wolverhampton and Cardiff, with engineers encouraging people to gain green skills by applying for an apprenticeship.
Mr Johnson said: “Upskilling people around the country is crucial to scaling up the UK’s green industrial revolution over the next decade. Centrica’s commitment to hire and train 3,500 apprentices will build the next generation of clean energy experts, who will go on to install the electric vehicle charge points and heat pumps we need across the UK.
“Through our Plan for Jobs, we’re supporting more and more people from all backgrounds to start new careers in innovative industries and get the right skills for the future.”
The recruitment drive by Centrica also seeks to boost the number of women working in STEM roles, with the aim to ensure 50% of recruits are women.
Chris O’Shea, Group Chief Executive, Centrica added: “We’re creating thousands of highly-skilled and well-paid British jobs to ensure that we have a workforce that can help to make the transition to low carbon both hassle-free and affordable for our customers and to support the government’s ambitious targets to make net zero a reality.
“It’s important that we address the low representation of women who currently work in STEM roles, which is why we have a targeted campaign to attract and retain more female recruits. Together, we can create a more inclusive and sustainable future that supports our communities, our planet and each other.”