COMMUNITY groups, residents and businesses are being urged to have their say on plans which could bring more than 10,000 jobs to the county.

The Cumbria Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) has launched a consultation on its Clean Energy Strategy, a plan to put the county at the forefront of the UK’s drive to tackle climate change, both generating green energy in the region, as well as cutting carbon emissions from communities – in turn creating up to 13,000 new green jobs.

The blueprint sets out how Cumbria will make a significant contribution to the UK’s low carbon energy future, building on its current status as a net exporter to the national grid. It details how the region has the potential to deliver up to 9GW of clean energy generation by 2040 – the equivalent of around 9 million homes by today’s levels of electricity consumption.

Consultation on the strategy is open until Wednesday, June 22, with people encouraged to submit comments on the draft via online survey or videoconference, taking place for private, public, voluntary, community and social enterprise representatives on Monday, June 20, with registration now open.

Jo Lappin, chief executive of Cumbria LEP, said: “Cumbria is already a powerhouse, punching well above its weight as a net exporter of renewable power to the nation. This strategy seeks to build on those green foundations, significantly expanding our clean energy infrastructure to create up to 13,000 new jobs and sustainable economic growth for our communities.

“From generating green hydrogen and becoming home to first-of-kind fusion technology, to capturing carbon and expanding offshore wind capacity, the strategy ensures Cumbria will stay at the forefront of the green economy.

“It demonstrates how Cumbria’s unique natural assets and industrial heritage will provide the platform to become a major contributor to the UK’s net zero future and levelling up ambitions, securing significant investment and new opportunities for the region. We encourage everyone to take a look and let us know their thoughts.”

The Clean Energy Strategy details how Cumbria can build on both its natural assets and industrial heritage by advancing offshore wind; driving the growth of low-carbon hydrogen; delivering new and advanced nuclear power; and investing in carbon, capture, usage and storage.