£11m Boost for Wales’ Energy Entrepreneurs to Turn Green Dreams into Reality

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Talented Welsh energy entrepreneurs have the chance to benefit from a share of £11 million government funding to turn their ideas into real products and services whilst eliminating carbon emissions.

  • £11 million UK government funding for Wales’ energy entrepreneurs to turn ideas into clean, green technologies that eliminate carbon emissions
  • Previous projects in Wales include an innovative cladding and solar heating system and a method of enhancing the efficiency of external wall insulation products, benefiting from grants of £72m in total since 2012
  • Funding supports the UK’s commitment to cut carbon emissions, level up the whole country and create new jobs as we build back better from the pandemic

Energy Minister Anne-Marie Trevelyan announced the latest round of the Energy Entrepreneurs Fund (EEF), which seeks to drive forward new clean technologies across all sectors of UK industry, supporting the UK to eliminate its contribution to climate change by 2050.

This includes innovations that boost energy efficiency in people’s homes, reduce carbon emissions and develop green transport as well as sourcing cleaner and greener ways to generate power and heat.

Wales’ budding energy entrepreneurs are being urged to bid for the latest £11 million government funding, which will support between 15 and 20 projects, with each successful bidder receiving up to £1 million each.

Successful projects could create hundreds of green jobs and kickstart millions-of-pounds-worth of private sector investment across the UK, helping the country to build back greener as we host the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow this November.

Previous recipients of funding include Energy Transitions in Cardiff, which has combined cladding and solar technology to provide clean and efficient heating solutions for buildings and EWiPRO, in Port Talbot, who, in conjunction with the Warm Wales programme, have developed an innovative system to enhance the efficiency of external wall insulation projects.

Energy Minister Anne-Marie Trevelyan said:

“From Edward Bowen’s pioneering work to develop radar to Philip Vaughn patenting the first design for a ball bearing, Wales is famous for its strong entrepreneurial spirit. We want to unleash this talent to drive forward green technologies across the UK, helping the public and businesses cut their carbon footprint.

“The Energy Entrepreneurs Fund is backing the UK’s next generation of inventors and innovators to turn their ideas into reality, with previous successful projects already helping drive down emissions across the country and creating green jobs as we work to build back greener.”

Since 2012, the government’s Energy Entrepreneur’s Fund has awarded £72 million worth of grants, supported 156 projects and leveraged more than £500 million in private investment – a figure that is still growing.

Previous low-carbon projects across Wales that have reaped the rewards of government grants, include:

  • Energy Transitions, Cardiff: received £160,793 to develop the Steel Zero system, which combines innovative stainless steel cladding panels with solar energy technology so a building’s entire façade can produce clean and efficient heat for the spaces within.
  • EWiPRO, Margam Port Talbot: received £52,000 as part of the Warm Wales programme towards the final development of an innovative guttering product that provides protection to external wall insulation systems helping to enhance the energy efficiency of buildings.
  • Minesto, Holyhead: received £502,608 for development of a new type of tidal power plant, called Deep Green, that can extract electrical energy from low-velocity ocean and tidal currents. Strangford Lough in Northern Ireland is the location of the test site that is being used to inform design of a full-scale power plant.
  • FaultCurrent, Cardiff: received £311,787 for the development of materials and advanced low-carbon technology that limit current flow to protect electrical systems during a fault, with the technology allowing manufacturing to be simplified and costs to be reduced.

Secretary of State for Wales, Simon Hart said

“The chance to share in this funding is fantastic news for promising Welsh energy entrepreneurs.

“The UK Government is committed to achieving net zero carbon by 2050. We will do so by investing in pioneering projects, people and businesses, creating green jobs and opportunities for people across Wales.”

John Blower, CEO Energy Transitions Ltd, said:

“The Energy Entrepreneurs Fund acted as a catalyst that enabled us to take forward our Steel Zero solar façade from concept towards market readiness.

“BEIS’ support, both through the Energy Entrepreneurs Fund grant and the associated ‘Incubation Support’, which has assisted us in a range of areas, including branding, licensing and marketing, has had a transformational effect and helped us establish a platform from which we aim to create a global clean technology business.”

In 2019, the UK became the first major economy to legally commit to ending its contribution to global warming by 2050. This commitment has been reinforced by the Prime Minister’s Ten Point Plan and the Energy White Paper, published in 2020.