The voice of the energy industry

Increasing diversity and inclusion in energy

Energy UK today hosted a roundtable on diversity and inclusion in the energy industry, with Employment Minister Alok Sharma.

The event, attended by representatives from 12 companies spanning the broad spectrum of the energy sector, discussed issues from gender balance, BAME representation, LGBT+ networks and disability inclusion. 

The Minister spoke to representatives from energy companies about the activity they have been taking to increase diversity in their organisations and tackle the barriers that lie in the way of creating a truly inclusive workforce.       

Energy UK has today also launched ‘Diversity and Inclusion in Energy’, a new publication showcasing a snapshot of the wide-range of activity underway in the sector to increase the opportunities for those from underrepresented groups including women, young and older people, black and ethnic minorities and people with long and short-term disabilities.   

Centrica, Drax, EDF Energy, EON, Npower, Ørsted, Octopus Energy, Robin Hood Energy, RWE, Scottish Power Renewables, SSE and Shell were amongst the companies taking part in the roundtable. 

Minister of State for Employment, Alok Sharma said: 
 
“The UK employment rate has never been higher with record rates of employment among women and black, Asian and minority ethnic groups. On top of this youth unemployment is down 40% since 2010. But we can do even better. Everyone, regardless of their background, should have the opportunity to do the work they want and reach their full potential. I’m incredibly encouraged that the energy sector has placed such importance on creating a truly diverse workforce and by the efforts they are already taking to tackle the issue. 
 
“We all know there is more to do and sharing best practice across the industry is an important part of reaching our shared goal to make sure we have a level playing field.”

Abbie Sampson, Director of External Affairs, said:

“We’ve been delighted to host the Minister to our roundtable today to discuss how the industry is rising to the challenge of creating a truly inclusive sector that is representative of our customers and the wider community we serve.

“We fully recognise that as an industry we have more to do, but our industry is undergoing a rapid transition, and with that comes an opportunity to increase diversity and inclusion. 

“At Energy UK, we are being proactive and showing leadership across the sector, most recently launching a new Equality and Diversity Forum to bring the sector together, share best practice and highlight successes in driving change. 

“By highlighting and building on all the good work already underway there is a huge opportunity to be realised – accessing an untapped resource of skills for the industry and giving more people the opportunity to work in an exciting industry at the forefront of innovation and technological development.”     

ENDS

Notes to Editors

•    Link to Diversity & Inclusion in Energy brochure
•    Roundtable photos and attendee list available on request

About Energy UK

Energy UK is the trade association for the GB energy industry with a membership of over 100 suppliers, generators, and stakeholders with a business interest in the production and supply of electricity and gas for domestic and business consumers. Our membership covers over 90% of both UK power generation and the energy supply market for UK homes. We represent the diverse nature of the UK’s energy industry – from established FTSE 100 companies right through to new, growing suppliers and generators, which now make up over half of our membership.

Our members turn renewable energy sources as well as nuclear, gas and coal into electricity for over 27 million homes and every business in Britain. Over 730,000 people in every corner of the country rely on the sector for their jobs, with many of our members providing long-term employment as well as quality apprenticeships and training for those starting their careers. The energy industry invests £12bn annually, delivers £88bn in economic activity through its supply chain and interaction with other sectors, and pays £6bn in tax to HMT.
 

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