Unions have backed a government consultation into the future of clean coal technology, which could create up to 60,000 jobs in engineering, manufacturing and procurement.
The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has launched a consultation on curbing carbon emissions from coal-fired power stations, and how to introduce new technologies to create cleaner energy supplies.
The consultation coincided with independent research by climate change consultancy AEA Group that predicted clean coal technology could bring between £2-4bn a year into the UK economy by 2030, and support between 30-60,000 new jobs.
TUC general secretary Brendan Barber said: “Today’s announcement is a real breakthrough for the future of clean coal technology in the UK, and will create tens of thousands of skilled manufacturing jobs.”
Energy and climate change secretary Ed Miliband said: “By acting early, jobs will also be created as Britain develops the expertise in what could be a major new industry, with [clean coal technology] projects offering the potential to form the hubs for clusters of low carbon industries.”