The UK and Welsh Governments have approved the £58.7 million Swansea Bay City Deal’s Supporting Innovation and Low Carbon Growth programme.
The programme will help establish the Swansea Bay City Region as a leader in low carbon growth and the green economy. Close collaboration with industry, government and academia is key to its success by delivering low carbon, sustainable and inclusive economic growth through creating the right environment to develop new technologies from the research stage, through to production, to support job creation in the region.
Led by Neath Port Talbot Council with Swansea University and University of South Wales as delivery partners, this programme aims to support the creation and safeguarding of 1,320 jobs in the green economy through seven interlinked projects that will enhance infrastructure, research and development and commercialisation:
- Bay Technology Centre – energy positive building providing high quality, flexible office and laboratory space
- South Wales Industrial Transition from Carbon Hub – purpose-built facility and specialist equipment to decarbonise the steel and metal industry and supply chain
- Advanced manufacturing production facility – providing production units with open access to shared specialist equipment to support start-up companies and local business growth in the innovation and manufacturing sectors linked to energy and renewables
- Property development fund – gap funding for bespoke and speculative commercial buildings in the Port Talbot Waterfront Enterprise Zone area
- Hydrogen stimulus project – enabling a demonstrator to prove commercial viability of carbon-free hydrogen supply to fuel hydrogen vehicles
- Air quality monitoring project – test bed for new technology to establish a greater understanding of air quality and levels of pollution to inform local action planning
- Low emission vehicle charging infrastructure – developing a strategy to decarbonise journeys in the Swansea Bay City Region and develop a pilot in the Valleys area of Neath Port Talbot
The funding will provide solutions to decarbonise commercial and industrial buildings, transport and industrial processes that will support the policies and strategies laid out by the Welsh and UK governments.
Wales Office Minister, David TC Davies, said:
This multi-million pound deal is vital to create jobs and prosperity across a large part of South Wales. When I visited in July I was hugely impressed with the projects that are driving the move to a low carbon, modern economy in Wales, fit for the 21st century. I’m delighted that the UK government’s investment will support this growth.
Chair of the Swansea Bay City Deal Joint Committee, Cllr Rob Stewart said:
I very much welcome the approval of this programme which means we now have more projects and programmes approved, and either in delivery or ready for delivery than any other city or growth deal in Wales. I want to pay tribute to the excellent work being done to ensure we deliver the city deal for South West Wales.
The Swansea Bay City Deal is an investment of up to £1.3 billion in a portfolio of nine major programmes and projects across the Swansea Bay City Region, which are together worth over £1.8 billion and 9,000 jobs to the region’s economy in coming years.
Funded by the UK Government, the Welsh Government, the public sector and the private sector, the City Deal is being led by Carmarthenshire Council, Neath Port Talbot Council, Pembrokeshire Council and Swansea Council, in partnership with Swansea University, the University of Wales Trinity Saint David, Swansea Bay University Health Board and Hywel Dda University Health Board.