By Scott Wright

SCOTTISH Gas has revealed plans to take on more than 200 ‘smart energy’ apprentices over the next decade.

The utility, which hopes to fill around one-third of the vacancies by the end of next year, said the recruitment drive will help provide engineers with the skills needed as part of the drive towards net zero by 2050. It pledged that half of the recruits will be women.

The apprentices will attend the British Gas training academy in Hamilton and after qualifying as smart energy experts will work on installing and maintaining carbon-efficient technologies, such as electric vehicle charging points, heat pumps and hydrogen boilers.

Chris O’Shea, chief executive of British Gas owner Centrica, said: “We’re creating thousands of highly-skilled and well-paid British jobs to ensure that we have a workforce that can help to make the transition to low carbon both hassle-free and affordable for our customers, and to support the Government’s ambitious targets to make net zero a reality.

“It’s important that we address the low representation of women who currently work in STEM roles, which is why we have a targeted campaign to attract and retain more female recruits. Together, we can create a more inclusive and sustainable future that supports our communities, our planet and each other.”

Scottish Gas said it will be supporting the recruitment drive by hitting the road in two new all-electric vans, taking in towns and cities from John O’Groats to Land’s End.