SSE has released a Just Transition Strategy, setting out 20 principles it will follow to ensure that no-one is left behind in the transition to a net zero economy.
The strategy, which was published on 18 November, outlined how following net zero legislative frameworks from the UK and Irish governments, which have recognised the need for accelerated climate action, attention has shifted to the social implications of the journey to net zero. In a bid to address these, it set out a series of principles to guide a just transition under five key themes, including good, green jobs, with principles including guaranteeing fair and decent work, and attracting and growing talent.
Under consumer fairness, SSE’s principles include co-creating with stakeholders, factoring in whole-system costs and benefits, and making transparent, evidence-based decisions, while elsewhere it will seek to look after those in high-carbon jobs and support communities through robust stakeholder consultations among other actions.
When it comes to building and operating new assets, SSE highlighted the potential to create long-lasting economic benefit at both local and national level. Its guiding principles will be supporting competitive domestic supply chains, setting social safeguards, implementing responsible developer standards, and sharing value with communities. It currently has 46 community benefit funds across the UK and Ireland, with total payments between 2008 and 2050 set to be at least £250mn. These funds, it said, will be key in supporting people and places that host its critical renewable energy infrastructure and could serve to transform the social capital of local places.