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ENER-G Launches Green Professionals Training Program

Cleantech firm claims recruiting and training new green talent will underpin growth plans.

Clean technology firm ENER-G has moved to address an expected skills gap in the emerging green economy with the launch of a new careers program designed to recruit engineering graduates and train them in environmental technology and management skills.

The company said the scheme, which was formally launched last week, will help accelerate its expansion plans by recruiting graduates with expertise in mechanical engineering, electrical engineering and building services.

U.K.-based ENER-G provides a range of clean technologies, including intelligent building management systems, combined heat and power systems, heat pumps, and waste-to-energy systems.

Previously, the firm has recruited graduates to one-off positions, but is now looking to formalize its green collar recruitment methods in a manner similar to blue chip firms' graduate recruitment models.

Traditional engineering disciplines are the founding principle of the graduate development program, said ENER-G group managing director Derek Duffill, adding that the company could offer attractive prospects to graduates.

"High-caliber engineers are at a premium and we believe the environmental technology sector will continue to generate explosive growth for many years to come," he said. "It offers the long-term career goals and financial rewards that ambitious engineers are looking for."

The scheme will also offer graduates an off-the-job development program over the first two years of employment, covering areas such as health and safety, finance, contractual awareness, leadership, presentation and negotiating skills.

Ben Richardson, a recently recruited 22-year-old graduate mechanical engineer who works as a junior applications engineer for ENER-G, encouraged graduates to join the firm. "It's good to work in a growing industry where there's better job security and the added bonus of helping to save the environment," he said.

ENER-G recently opened an additional factory at its headquarters in Salford, allowing the company to increase production of its combined heat and power and biogas generator units by 50 percent.

The government's recent Low Carbon Transition Plan predicted that the shift towards a low-carbon economy will result in more than 1.2 million green jobs by 2020, but some experts have voiced fears that the rapid expansion of the clean technology sector could be hampered by a shortage of skilled scientists and engineers.

Speaking at the launch of the new strategy earlier this month, energy and climate change secretary Ed Miliband said the government was aware of the potential issue and was preparing a number of initiatives to improve the UK's low-carbon skills base, which will be announced in the coming months.

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