Leading the switch to net zero Wales

A new £20 million facility will build on the success of SaMI and help develop a green economy and a net zero Wales

SaMI is pleased to announce the launch of a new £20 million facility to help industry in the region create a low-carbon future in a net zero Wales.

Practical solutions for industry

The facility will build on SaMI’s strength and expertise in steel and metals innovation. Academic researchers, government and industry will collaborate to deliver practical innovative solutions to decarbonise the steel and metals sector and supply chain.

Switching successfully to a net zero future is essential for the manufacturing sector. This will protect the environment and develop the industries and workforce vital to a green economy and a net zero Wales.

Open access facility

The facility will strengthen regional decarbonisation activity alongside new business, investment and job opportunities for a future green economy.

The facility is called SWITCH: South Wales Industrial Transition from Carbon Hub. It forms part of the Supporting Innovation and Low Carbon Growth programme, led by Neath Port Talbot County Borough Council, as part of the Swansea Bay City Deal. The programme will help establish the region as a leader in low carbon growth and the green economy.

Located close to Port Talbot steel works and train station, SWITCH will be an open access facility. We will work with the steel and metals industry to:

· Develop steel and metal manufacturing processes to reduce carbon emissions

· Enable the recovery and recycling of materials and by-products in manufacturing

· Create advanced materials for construction, transport and packaging sectors to support net zero solutions for society

Industry collaboration for net zero Wales

The steel and metals industry remains at the heart of the south Wales community.

By supporting the industrial transition to net zero Wales, SWITCH will play a vital role in economic growth in the region.

This will enable Welsh industry to remain globally competitive, securing a long-term, sustainable future for the region.

Chris Williams, head of industrial decarbonisation for Industry Wales who leads the South Wales Industrial Cluster (SWIC) said:

“South Wales is built on steel and metals. We have the people, expertise and close collaborative relationships to lead the way to a net-zero carbon future for manufacturing industries across the globe.

Industry has a vital role to play in a more sustainable future. In Wales we have established a strong collaborative approach to innovation. The SWITCH hub will build on this approach, bringing together expertise from industry, academia, and government to provide practical solutions for decarbonisation.

The SWITCH hub will further boost our environmental drive here for a net zero Wales, by developing sustainable, competitive ways of manufacturing.”

Developing Wales’ talent and workforce

Professor Paul Boyle, Vice-Chancellor of Swansea University, said:

“For Swansea University, successful regional partnerships are as much about supporting the development of people and skills as they are about innovative research. The SWITCH initiative will build upon our one-hundred-year history of purposeful collaboration with industry, to address the challenges of our time and deliver real innovation in Wales.

This new SWITCH hub will further expand our University’s research capabilities to work alongside industry and government, in support of our shared ambition for a net zero Wales.”

 

Contributed by Cat Wilkins, November 2021.

Cat Wilkins is marketing communications manager for the Steel and Metals Institute at Swansea University.

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