The future is space-aged and green

8 November 2010
The past few weeks have not been a lot of fun in the UK. Stark public spending cuts have been announced, days will be shorter (and darker) for the next few months, and in business Rolls-Royce shares are on the slide and building group Rok has called in the administrators. But it’s not all doom and gloom. New industries are picking up in the UK and at the end of last week another was championed by Prime Minister David Cameron himself. The government has committed £200 million to building the renewable energy supply chain in the UK, and companies are already investing here. Siemens has committed to building an £80 million factory for wind turbines in the UK and Spanish manufacturer Gamesa has now picked the UK as its worldwide centre for its offshore wind energy business. It plans to invest up to €150 million (£131 million) by 2014. Bill Johnson, procurement manager from Siemens Transmission and Distribution told SM (read the full interview online tomorrow): “Suppliers are really excited at future offshore wind farm supply opportunities.” He said they are now much more alert to the industry’s potential than 18 months ago. Elsewhere, the UK space industry has defied the recession, with earnings that are now at £7.5 billion. We blogged in July that it was one of the few manufacturing industries where the UK remains dominant, second in the world only to the US. So if you’re looking in the UK for the technology of the future, make it green and spacey.
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