‘Moon-shot’ climate change solutions to be accelerated with the launch of skills initiative X-Academy

Initial 24 recruits to take part in two-year energy programme in Aberdeen.

A new transition skills initiative will focus bright minds on solving real life climate change energy issues. Led by energy consultancy Xodus, X-Academy will provide training opportunities for hundreds of people to work directly on initiatives to reduce emissions and accelerate efforts towards net zero.

The two-year mentored placements in Aberdeen will be open to graduates and people looking to reskill for positive change with 24 participants expected in the first cohort. Non-profit-making X-Academy will reinvest training profits into further skills development, climate projects and innovations.

ETZ Ltd is allocating up to £1.6m from the North East Economic Recovery and Skills Fund (NEERSF) to support the project. NEERSF is a £14.3 million investment by the Scottish Government to support economic recovery and enhance skill levels in Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire though key sector growth, employment, training, and skills development opportunities.

Peter Tipler, X-Academy Director and Sales & Marketing Director at Xodus said: “We want to use the time and resource spent on workplace training to make a transformative difference to support the planet. X-Academy will enable selected participants to have a meaningful impact in low carbon energy, focusing their collective mindpower on action that will address emissions and decarbonisation targets. With each trainee spending around 2,000 hours a year through on the job learning, we want to harness that power and put talented and motivated people to work addressing the moon-shot ideas that could make the biggest difference. We are thrilled to have the support of ETZ, bp and EnBW and are in talks with other stakeholders to ensure X-Academy can help as many people as possible.”

We want to put talented and motivated people to work addressing the moon-shot ideas that could make the biggest difference.

Pete Tipler, X-Academy Director

ScotWind consortium partners bp and EnBW have committed more than £1 million to X-Academy in a five-year deal which includes creating entry-level energy transition roles and reskilling experienced workers if the consortium is successful in their ScotWind application.

Rebecca Hewlett, Director of Renewables & Environment at Xodus added: “Alongside broader transition skills, X-Academy is our investment in contributing to the sustainability of the Scottish offshore wind industry. We will be working with key clients to help a new generation of workers to access the opportunities that the energy transition is creating. The growth of offshore wind globally has been incredible to witness, but without a concerted effort, we will quickly encounter a bottle-neck in experienced professionals to deliver these projects.”

Maggie McGinlay, Chief Executive at ETZ Ltd said: “ETZ is committed to ensuring a Just Transition by enabling the transition of skills to progress low carbon energy opportunities. We are excited to support this initiative which will deliver a practical and action focused model to deliver a workforce that is ready to support the leading position the North East of Scotland is taking in the journey to Net Zero.”

Emeka Emembolu, SVP North Sea at bp said: “Scotland is uniquely positioned to lead the energy transition by harnessing the decades of skills and experience built up in the offshore oil and gas sector. Initiatives like the X-Academy will open doors for existing and future talent to pursue careers in the low carbon energy sector – and importantly be included in a just transition.

“That’s exactly why skills development was a critical component of our ambitious ScotWind bid with EnBW, which, if successful, will see us commit more than £1million to the X-Academy, so we can continue to nurture and apply those skills as we pave a new lower carbon energy future together.”

The application process will launch shortly and interested candidates can register their interest here.