Twelve of the UK’s leading ‘green innovators’ are to showcase their technologies to international investors at the government’s Global Investment Summit, on Tuesday 19 October.
The ‘green dozen’ will display a range of innovations, including zero-emission hydrogen vehicles, autonomous and electric vehicles, water purification systems, electric and eVTOL aircraft, robot-enabled automated construction systems, offshore wind, tidal stream technologies, fusion prototypes, decarbonisation systems, and more.
The companies are: Orbital Marine Power; Hydro Industries; Hy4Heat; Tokamak Energy; First Light Fusion; Arrival; Aurrigo – RDM Group; Wrightbus; Vertical Aerospace; Rolls Royce; Automated Architecture; and Drax Group.
The event is designed to showcase “the best of UK innovation and green technology”, positioning Britain as an ideal venue for foreign direct investment.
It was originally scheduled to take place at Windsor Castle but will now be at London’s Science Museum. It has no relation to an online event of the same name, scheduled for 2022.
It will be hosted by Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who was recently slammed for his green technology speech at the United Nations, during which he invoked Kermit the Frog to stunned silence. It will also be supported by members of the Royal Family, according to the Department for International Trade.
“Around 200 investors” will attend the event, the full guest list for which has been kept secret over security fears.
That said, the government has published a partial list of names on gov.uk, which includes the Cop26 president, senior figures from the Cabinet, academics, economists, business leaders, representatives of the World Trade Organisation, virologists and vaccine experts, and the CEOs of several international banks and investment houses. Who the unpublished names can be is a mystery, therefore.
Minister for Investment Gerry Grimstone said, “Our Global Investment Summit will put UK innovation on the map and demonstrate how we can use investment to nurture technological developments and propel our economy towards a more prosperous, exciting future.
“These businesses show why the UK is a global hub for green technology – from major advances in tidal turbines and fusion energy, to electric vehicle development and zero-emission aircraft.
“These industries of the future will not only help ensure a cleaner, greener planet but also create high-value jobs across the UK.”
Warren East, CEO of Rolls Royce, which will demonstrate electric aircraft at the event, added, “The transition to Net Zero is a societal imperative and one of the greatest commercial opportunities of our time. We are proud to play our part in the Global investment Summit alongside the UK government, demonstrating the positive transforming power of industrial technology.”
The government’s Ten-Point Plan for green technologies aims to mobilise £12 billion in central investment to support up to 250,000 skilled jobs in the UK, while unlocking three times as much private sector investment by 2030.
In related news, more than 30 science and technology organisations have this week urged the government not to renege on the commitment made earlier this year to boost UK R&D investments by £22 billion in the lifetime of this Parliament.
According to the FT, Whitehall’s recent refusal to recommit to its own targets may put at risk its plan to make the UK into a science and technology “superpower” – a word the government has also applied to its AI ambitions.
The next Budget – due on 27 October – will reveal whether the Chancellor is able to honour the R&D pledge, not to mention the £12 billion of green investment.