Published by the Tipton-based Cast Metals Federation, the Net Zero roadmap is urging the Government to create a stable policy environment that focuses on reforming energy markets and providing clean energy, offering incentives for capital investment in zero carbon furnaces and production equipment and ensuring UK trade policies support customer demand for low carbon products from global markets.
It also call for Whitehall to encourage and enable the release of land for modern, zero carbon foundries and associated zero carbon energy generation facilities.
Adam Vicary, chief executive of Walsall-based Castings and chairman of the CMF Net Zero Advisory Panel, commented: “This blueprint sets out how UK casting manufacturers can lead globally, growing the industry, decarbonising our components, providing strategic resilience to UK supply chains, creating jobs and wealth and making the components required for a modern economy.
“Our industry can be part of the solution for the UK, making use of recycled metal to produce locally sourced components and leading the way in the supply of low carbon, cast metal components and finished products, including those needed for greener technologies.”
He continued: “Reversing the leakage of economic strength for the casting and foundry industry is no easy task, but it is the ambition we have set out in this roadmap.
“To return £10 billion of GVA to the UK and support our national transition to a net zero future, a partnership with Government is what our industry wants, aligning foundry sector investment with national industrial decarbonisation strategy. At the moment, current policies threaten to do the opposite, destroying the UK’s remaining foundry capacity before the transition to Net Zero really begins.”
The Cast Metals Federation works to foster development, collaboration and innovation in the UK foundry and casting sector, representing the interests of industry to Government.
Its 100-strong foundry membership produces 85 per cent of all domestic castings, contributing over £2bn to the UK economy and underpinning strategic national supply chains, such as aerospace, automotive, defence, marine, medical and power generation.
Companies make castings in all metals and of all sizes and shapes, using modern and automated versions of processes that have been at the heart of human societies for more than 3,000 years, including sand casting, die casting, investment casting, vacuum, centrifugal and continuous processing.
Dr Pam Murrell, chief executive of the CMF, added her support: “UK foundries know how to compete internationally and deliver low and zero carbon components into strategic supply chains. Importantly, they can also secure investment in new production facilities and optimise sites to maximise the benefits of on-site energy generation.
“However, like any other industry, we look to Government to set a clear and stable policy framework that allows our sector to compete. The biggest single factor affecting our ability to decarbonise is how our electricity is generated, distributed, and charged, and this lies almost entirely outside of our control.
“The policy environment is an area where we expect and need Government to lead, and our role is to collaborate and support policy makers in setting achievable targets that align energy, industrial and trade strategies.
“By working together, we can reverse the trend of the castings industry drifting offshore and instead encourage inward investment for the UK. This blueprint can go a long way to supporting our transition to a vibrant, net zero sector.”