£500k Fund to support green economic recovery
Posted on 24 Feb 2021
A NEW innovative £500,000 fund has been set up to support economic recovery and tackle climate change as part of the Council’s Green New Deal.
At a meeting of Cabinet on Tuesday, Councillors approved proposals for a Green Jobs Fund.
The money will support the creation of local fair and green jobs whilst supporting businesses to becoming ‘greener’ through reducing carbon emissions and developing new innovative processes and technologies.
The commitment is part of the Council’s ambitious target of having net-zero carbon emissions by 2030 following the declaration of a Climate Emergency in 2019.
The proposal for a Green Jobs Fund is part of the Council’s bold Economic Recovery and Renewal Approach which was agreed by Cabinet in September 2020 and set out a range of actions to build back better, fairer and greener through a local Green New Deal for North Ayrshire.
At the heart of the plan was a £8.8 Investment Fund which was established to support Community Wealth Building, Climate Emergency and infrastructure investments. It is hoped that the Fund will help support businesses and community organisations to adopt new innovative practices and models including circular economy approaches and renewable energy, reduce business energy costs, upskill and reskill business and their employees, as well as securing further investment into the area at a time when it is needed most. The Green Jobs Fund will use a Community Wealth Building approach to improve the resilience of the local business base and create local supply chain opportunities.
Councillor Joe Cullinane, Leader of North Ayrshire Council and Cabinet Member for Community Wealth Building, said: “It is all very well declaring a Climate Emergency or setting ambitious targets but I have always been clear that what’s really needed to deliver on these ambitions are bold decisions and proper investment.
“The creation of a Green Jobs Fund through our £8.8 million Investment Fund will support our local business base recover from the economic impact of Covid-19 and create fair, green jobs for our local communities”
“We will feel the economic shock of this pandemic for some time but we are committed to building back our local economy better, fairer and greener”
Grants of up £10,000 will support businesses with green transition projects and larger-scale investment and job opportunities projects (£1m plus) could seek up to £30,000 of support.
Interested businesses will be asked to apply for the grant and each will be judged on its own merit.
The Green Jobs Fund is being supported by North Ayrshire’s Ventures Trust (NAVT) through the provision of £250,000 towards the overall fund.