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Thousands of workers to be upskilled in France to keep the pace with the battery revolution

07 luglio 2021 | 20.22
LETTURA: 4 minuti

PARIS, July 7, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- EIT InnoEnergy and France have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to launch the EBA250 Academy to reskill and upskill tens of thousands of workers for the French battery industry. As one of the leading actors under the European Battery Alliance (EBA), France – with three Gigafactories in the making and foreseen to operate in 2023 – has a growing need for specialised engineers and technicians. To fill this gap, EIT InnoEnergy, coordinating the industrial work under the EBA, will spearhead an education-sharing platform to dramatically reduce the costs of reskilling and upskilling.

EIT InnoEnergy is an innovation community supported by the European Institute of Innovation & Technology (EIT), a body of the European Union. The public-private partnership will address the emerging skills gap with approximately 800,000 qualified workers required in the European battery industry by 2025. This includes the lack of transferrable digital skills needed to support the digitalisation of the entire value chain, from factory automation with industry 4.0 to AI application. Reskilling the workforce will be essential in ensuring Europe meets its Green Deal targets by safeguarding sufficient battery capacity to be brought forward to support the electrification of transport and decarbonisation of energy.

Welcoming the announcement, Thierry Breton, European Commissioner for the Internal Market, said: "The European battery project is at the heart of our ambition for a green, digital, resilient European industry. For a competitive and sustainable EU battery value chain, it is essential to support our workforce in developing the necessary skills, in line with the Pact for Skills. This partnership will train 150,000 people in France by 2025 to support the transitioning of jobs to electric mobility and boost the competitiveness of the European battery sector."

EIT InnoEnergy plans to urgently roll-out its training programme in France and throughout Europe to upskill personnel for technician, engineering and researcher positions. The courses have been designed by experts currently working in the battery sector and will cover a range of topics from electromobility, residential storage and grid storage, to recycling and data science. The modules will be delivered by local training organisations online, although some may require physical attendance at local training facilities, and any engineer or executives working in energy can apply.

Diego Pavia, CEO of EIT InnoEnergy, said: "The EBA250 Academy will upskill people who will design and operate the European batteries value chain, from upstream to recycling. It ensures we can deliver the annual €250 billion battery value chain by 2025, as envisioned in 2017 when European Commission Vice President Šefčovič launched the European Battery Alliance and mandated EIT InnoEnergy to lead the industrial ecosystem. It is also a leading example of how Europe is succeeding in addressing the upskilling of our people and creates the new added value jobs required by the green transition."

Commission Vice-President Maroš Šefčovič, in charge of the European Battery Alliance commented: "2021 could be another defining year for the European Battery Alliance – also thanks to our resolute collective action to address the fast-emerging skills challenge. The new battery industry requires a new set of skills. Reskilling and upskilling programmes, such as the EBA250 Academy, will therefore help match skills with labour market needs as well as reinforce the social dimension of Europe's recovery. In this context, I am glad to see that Europe continues to be a global hotspot for battery investment. By 2025, we are set to manufacture enough battery cells each year to power at least six million electric cars." 

Along with France, EIT InnoEnergy is already implementing the EBA250 Academy in Spain and plans to roll out the programme across Europe during 2021.  

About EIT InnoEnergy EIT InnoEnergy operates at the centre of the energy transition and is the leading engine for sustainable energy, bringing the technology and skills required to support the green deal and Europe's decarbonisation goals.

Recognised globally as the most active energy investor and one of the largest climate tech and renewable energy tech investors in 2020, EIT InnoEnergy backs innovations across a range of areas. These include, energy storage, transport and mobility, renewables and sustainable buildings and cities – leveraging its trusted ecosystem of 500+ partners and 23 shareholders.

To date, it has invested 500 energy innovative industrial ventures, some of them have reached the Unicorn status, and are on track to generate €16 billion in revenue and have saved 5.5M tons of CO2 to date.

EIT InnoEnergy is the driving force behind several European initiatives, including the European Battery Alliance (EBA), the European Green Hydrogen Acceleration Centre (EGHAC) and the European Solar Initiative (ESI).

Established in 2010 and supported by the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT), a body of the European Union, EIT InnoEnergy has offices across Europe and in Boston, US.


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