Renewable UK: Faces of Wind Energy

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Spotlight on

Energy and
Environment


A green light for Energy and Environment

Work in a sector that lights up our houses, powers our computers and makes Wales greener.

How about doing work that produces energy for Wales? Ever think about getting involved in work to protect our environment?

The energy and environment sector is expected to grow and create more job opportunities between now and 2022.

Wales has many resources to produce energy including wind, tidal, hydro, solar, biomass, and knowledge in nuclear energy. (Energy & Utility Skills, 2013) With the decrease in coal mining, Wales is turning to new ways of energy production.

Jobs in Energy and Environment will play a vital part in:

  • increasing energy production for Wales and the UK
  • ensuring Wales is a clean and healthy environment in which to live 

Jobs you could do include new roles like Wind Turbine Technician, a wide range of engineering roles and environmental jobs like Ecologist.  When new energy sites are being built they also need large numbers of construction and civil engineering workers. 

So why not enter a fast changing and exciting sector and get skilled in new technology?

£1 billion
a year is generated by the Welsh energy and environment sector 
(Welsh Government, 2014)

1 in 44
of all jobs in the UK is connected to energy 
(Energy UK, 2014)

2nd
largest operating windfarm in the world is in Wales  
(RWE Innogy, 2015)

50 million
smart meters are to be installed by 2019 in the UK, and new jobs created. 
(Energy and Utility Skills, 2013)


 11% of the total workforce in Wales is employed in Energy and Environment 
(Welsh Government, 2015)






Wales needs more...


Programmers and Software Developers, Engineering Technicians, 
Mechanical Engineers, Environment Professionals,
Welding Trades Civil Engineers, 
Electricians and Electrical Fitters,
Design and Development Engineers, 
Refuse and Salvage Occupations, Electrical Engineers


 

New jobs

New technological developments in energy production create new job roles like:

  • Smart Meter Installer
  • Wind Turbine Technician
  • Energy and Environmental Analyst
  • Energy/Sustainability Consultant
  • Energy Management Engineer
  • Offshore Installation Manager
  • Solar Installer (Electrical, Hot Water, Photovoltaic)
  • Subsea High Voltage Engineer
  • Green Deal Adviser/Assessor

Find out more information on what these jobs involve on industry specific websites. Look at the useful links for more information.

Employment Hotspots

There are jobs in Energy and Environment all over Wales.

Cardiff has the largest population in Wales and the highest number of jobs in Energy and Environment. Over 85% of energy and environment jobs are spread across the rest of Wales.

Cardiff
21,000

 

Swansea
12,000

 

Rhondda Cynon Taff
9,200

 

Pembrokeshire
7,900

 

Flintshire
7,700

 

Caerphilly
7,400

 

Carmarthenshire
7,300

 

Gwynedd
7,100

 

Wrexham
7,100

 

Newport
7,100

 

Bridgend
7,000

 

Monmouthshire
6,000

 

Neath Port Talbot
5,900

 

Powys
5,900

 

Vale of Glamorgan
4,700

 

Conwy
4,600

 

Isle of Anglesey
4,100

 

Torfaen
4,000

 

Blaenau Gwent
3,800

 

Ceredigion
3,600

 

Denbighshire
3,000

 

Merthyr Tydfil
2,500

 

Source: Welsh Government, 2015

 

Anglesey has the Energy Island programme, aimed to grow employment in Energy and Environment in North Wales. It includes developments in nuclear, biomass
and wind energy.  
(Anglesey County Council, 2014)

Pembrokeshire is the 4th highest employer for energy and environment jobs in Wales. The Haven Waterway Enterprise Zone in Pembrokeshire includes refineries, oil and gas storage depots, and solar farms.
(Welsh Government, 2015)


 

Meet the Employers

These are some of the energy and environment employers in Wales:

RWE Innogy
Gwynt y Mor Offshore Windfarm, North Wales. 


Dulas
Machynlleth.


Valero Oil Refinery
Pembroke.


Western Power Distribution
Swansea.

Llanisolar
Llanidloes, Powys.


Dŵr Cymru, Welsh Water 
Treharris, Rhondda Cynon Taff.


Wales and West Utilities
Newport. 


SSE
Cardiff.


What can I earn?

Salaries can vary depending on your experience, the employer and where you live. Higher salaries can be awarded for more senior positions. Salaries also vary for self-employed workers.

Job Salary range dependent on experience (£)


£12,000 - £19,000


£13,000 - £26,000


£14,000 - £19,000


£15,000 - £25,000


£15,000 - £28,000


£18,000 - £22,000


£18,000 - £31,000


£18,000 - £31,000


£18,000 - £37,000


£20,000 - £33,000


£22,000 - £42,000


£22,000 - £42,000


£22,000 - £44,000


£22,000 - £46,000


£22,000 - £47,000


£22,000 - £64,000


£23,000 - £45,000


£23,000 - £45,000


£24,000 - £27,000


£24,000 - £46,000


£24,000 - £48,000


Source: Cascaid, 2016



Getting In

Most energy sector jobs need strong scientific and maths skills so Maths and Science A Level subjects are often needed.

Below are a few examples of the courses for Energy and Environment that are available in Wales:

  • Environmental Technologies
  • Nuclear Engineering
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Welding
  • Building Services Engineering
  • Civil Engineering
  • Environmental Conservation Management
  • Engineering (Wind Turbine Maintenance)


Search for Apprenticeships Find a course

80%of UK energy and water employers are seeking scientific and mathematically skilled staff. ’
(Energy & Utility Skills, 2013)


24% of people
working in Energy and
Environment are self-employed.’
(Welsh Government, 2015)

 

Higher Education Courses in Wales for Energy and Environment.
Examples include:

  • Foundation Degree (FdSc) Sustainable Design & Construction (Renewable Energy Technology)
  • BSc (Hons) Ecology
  • BEng (Hons) Renewable Energy and Sustainable Technologies
  • MSc/Diploma Electrical Energy Systems
  • MSc Sustainable Power Technology
  • MSc Wildlife and Conservation Management

Try our Career Search Find a HE course



Self-employment

In order to become self-employed you would need the qualifications and certification required by the industry. For example, Microgeneration Certification is required if you are self-employed or a contractor, in order to install solar panels and other forms of green energy.

Get networking!

Networking and word of mouth are particularly important in the energy and environment sector. Get to know other creative people and businesses, face-to-face, and through social media.
Build your network of contacts to sell yourself and your ideas:

Network! Network! Network!

Get experience!

Get as much work experience as you can. Lack of general work experience is one of the top 3 reasons employers give for not employing someone.


 

32% of workers in Energy and Environment have the equivalent of a Level 4 qualification or above. 
For example, a Higher National Certificate (HNC).


 

Skills in demand

43% is the increase expected by 2020 for higher level qualifications such as Level 4 or degree. (Energy & Utility Skills, 2013)

The skills most in demand within Energy and Environment are job specific and technical skills including:

  • Engineers and related skills including mechanical, structural, subsea high voltage engineers, turbine technicians and being able to work out at sea in rough weather
  • Scientific and mathematically skilled staff
  • Information Technology
  • Project Management

Employers are also seeking employees who are adaptable and can transfer their skills into new technologies.

New in the sector

Look out for jobs from new developments in the sector:

The creation of biomass power stations on Anglesey could provide electricity for up to 650,000 homes by 2020, and in Port Talbot, electricity for up to 950,000 homes by 2020. (Orthios, 2016)

The Severn Estuary has the second highest tidal range in the world, so construction of a tidal lagoon in Swansea would use this natural resource to generate electricity.

The construction of the new nuclear power station, Wylfa on Anglesey could employ up to 8000 construction workers, and up to 1000 jobs when in operation. (NWEAB, 2015)


New types of energy

Waste-to-energy – making energy from waste

Anaerobic digestion – making biogas from waste and turning it into electricity

Biomass systems design – turning wood and waste into energy

Wind Energy – offshore and onshore wind farms producing electricity

Solar Energy – producing energy from the sun

Smart metering – a meter that shows you how much electricity you are using

Micro-generation – production of heat and power on a small scale such as installing solar panels on a house


53% increase is likely for Mechanical Engineer job openings up to 2022
(UKCES Careers of the Future, 2014)


 

Do I need Welsh Language skills?

If you work in Wales, being able to speak and write in both Welsh and English can give you an advantage in the workplace.


What about the future?

There is a spotlight on Energy and Environment more than ever as countries look for ways of producing electricity and saving the environment at the same time. So demand for jobs is expected to grow.

Fastest growing Energy and Environment jobs in Wales, shown in percentage of growth.

 Mechanical Engineers
20%


 Design Engineers
19%


 Civil Engineers
19%


 Environment Professionals
18%


 Construction Project Managers 
17%


 Electrical Engineers
17%


 IT Business Analysts, Architects and Systems Designers
15%


 Conservation and Environmental Associate Professionals
13%


 Programmers and Software Developers
13%


 Conservation Professionals
9%


 Electrical and Electronics Technicians
7%


 Waste Disposal and Environmental Managers
6%


 Engineering Technicians
5%


 Building and Civil Engineering Technicians
5%



 Average overall predicted growth in Wales
4%


Source: Working Futures 2012-2022


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