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Low Carbon Technology

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Greater Birmingham’s ambition is to be the home of the nation’s low carbon industry – and no UK city is better placed to lead the revolution in green energy.

The city has a number of key strengths, not least its unparalleled strategic location at the heart of the UK’s road and rail networks. By 2026, High Speed Rail will slash the journey to London to just 38 minutes, while Birmingham’s fast-growing airport offers connections to 150 markets around the world.

Another key strength is the wealth of local universities and institutes where the future of energy is being shaped. The University of Birmingham is world-renowned as a specialist in energy storage, supercritical fluids and hydrogen fuel cell development. Birmingham City University has a dedicated Centre for Low Carbon Research.

Aston University is home to the European Bioenergy Research Institute, with expertise in combustion, anaerobic digestion, gasification and pyrolysis. It also offers an unprecedented programme helping SMEs to reduce their carbon footprint.

Meanwhile, the Energy Research Accelerator – backed by £180 million of funding – brings academics together to tackle the nation’s greatest energy challenges. In total, more than 500 academics work in energy-related research in the region.

The wider West Midlands region boasts a critical mass of activity in waste management, waste to energy and low carbon transport, with rich opportunities for SMEs in the supply chain.

Low Carbon: Key facts and stats

Unbeatable Regional Ecosystem

  • Europe’s largest transport technology R&D cluster
  • More patents for low carbon transport than anywhere else in Europe
  • Energy Capital initiative aims to make the West Midlands the UK’s leading location for energy investment and innovation
  • More than £2.5 billion invested in energy technology each year

The Low Carbon City

  • Birmingham City Council aiming to slash CO2 emissions by 2026
  • £6million being invested in Tyesley green energy park
  • Home to the UK’s first low and zero-emission refuelling station
  • Host of the world’s first zero emission vehicles summit
  • Energy Systems Catapult is based in Birmingham

A Research Hub

  • More than 500 academics working in energy-related research across region
  • University of Birmingham is world-leading specialist in low carbon energy
  • Aston University is home to the European Bioenergy Research Institute
  • Energy Technologies Institute established with Nottingham and Loughborough
  • £180m Energy Research Accelerator is multi-partner research hub – with key partners in Greater Birmingham

Connected to Markets Worldwide

  • Birmingham offers superb access to the rest of the UK and the world
  • 50 airlines fly direct to over 140 destinations from Birmingham airport
  • From 2026, High speed rail will bring London 38 minutes away