Construction work begins on Mersey based national green energy training centre

Construction work is beginning this week on Merseyside on the UK’s first national training centre offering recognised qualifications in installing green energy microgeneration technologies.

Courses at the Green Energy Training Centre (GETC), based on Wirral International Business Park, are due to begin in November when the £280,000 centre opens. The GETC is a partnership between the Skills Funding Agency, Wirral based Stiebel Eltron, the German owned renewable energy product manufacturer, and Scientiam the Merseyside based training provider.

The GETC is the first centre in the region to offer building industry qualifications on the latest microgeneration technologies such as heat pumps, solar photovoltaic and solar panels. . The GETC courses are being targeted at installers such as engineers, electrical contractors, plumbing contractors and heating and ventilation specialists wanting to improve their skills in green energy.

Scientiam managing director Mandi O’Shea said the GETC is now taking bookings for courses and urged interested businesses to get in touch to find out more.

“We are incredibly excited about the new GETC,” she said. “At present there are no other centres in the region offering this depth of training and qualifications. We know this progressive approach to formally recognise microgeneration training is the future. Moreover we know there is a real demand for it. SummitSkills, the Sector Skills Council for the building services engineering sector, says that the 2000 heating and plumbing business in the North West are calling for more green energy training to help them comply with new building standards.

“But to ensure this centre really does make an impact we have partnered with Stiebel Eltron as one of the biggest and most established renewable energy product manufacturers in the world. With its research and development experience and expertise we know the GETC will offer training on the most cutting edge technology.”

Stiebel Eltron managing director Mark McManus said it is now imperative for firms involved in construction to improve their green energy expertise.

“By 2016 all new homes built must be carbon neutral,” he said. “So there is massive pressure on the construction industry to ramp up its knowledge of, and expertise in, green energy. But there is carrot as well as stick. Green energy provides a real commercial opportunity for properly trained installers. The GETC has a clear brief to focus on microgeneration technologies defined as green technologies found within homes and commercial properties which produce heating, hot water, ventilation, lighting and electricity. These technologies have a vital role to play in meeting green targets. Today renewables account for less than 2pc of energy production yet by 2020 renewable energy should account for 30pc of electricity supply and 12pc of heat supply.”

Mr McManus said the GETC will provide the highest standards of training on the latest equipment helping installers from across the UK become accredited for the Government’s Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS).

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