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Government to invest £4bn to create 250,000 new green jobs

By Simon Jack
Business editor

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  • Climate change
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The government is to invest £4bn in creating 250,000 new green jobs as part of its plan to hit net zero emissions.

It also aims to equip a generation of workers with new green skills.

The government will release its long-awaited 10-point plan to make the UK carbon neutral by 2050 later on Tuesday.

It will emphasise the potential jobs that the so-called green industrial revolution could bring to regions that have suffered industrial decline.

The BBC can confirm that technology to capture and store carbon created in industrial processes will receive substantial government investment.

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The plan will also include investment in offshore wind as already announced by the prime minister at the Conservative Party conference.

Residential heating is one of the biggest emitters of carbon and there will be government grants towards making homes more energy efficient - which again it hopes will create thousands of new jobs.

It is thought the final plan will also include investments in hydrogen power and there may be a commitment to new nuclear energy.

In October, the BBC learned that the government was close to giving the green light to a new nuclear power station at Sizewell in Suffolk.

It comes after the collapse of nuclear projects in Anglesey and Cumbria after Japanese firms Hitachi and Toshiba pulled out.

The figure of £4bn will be considered by many as a small down-payment on a transformation that the Committee on Climate Changes estimates will cost £1 trillion over the next 30 years.

The full 10-point plan will be published tonight at 22:30 ahead of a press conference and round table with key stakeholders on Wednesday.

Petrol and diesel car ban

There has also been speculation that a ban on the sale of new petrol and diesel cars will be brought forward to 2030 - five years earlier than previously planned.

Hybrid vehicles, which have petrol or diesel engines but also use electric power, will have a stay of execution until 2035.

Plans for a ban on the sale of traditional petrol and diesel cars were first announced in 2017, as part of a strategy to clean up city air. It was meant to take effect in 2040.

In February, that target was brought forward to 2035, as the government sought to burnish its environmental credentials ahead of a now-postponed UN climate summit in Glasgow, but it now looks set to be revised again.

Mike Hawes, chief executive of the Society for Motor Manufacturers and Traders, believes that meeting the government's target will require serious support for the industry.

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