With the current aim for a low carbon economy in Scotland, it becomes imperative to ensure that there are adequate workforce skills available to support meeting this aspiration. As such, the Scottish Government has developed a low carbon skills agenda that emphasizes rapidly developing and delivering specialist skills that are needed to enable the adoption of new technologies. Developing and delivering specialist skills are arguably not possible without having an understanding of what these skills are. This paper thus reports on the successful trial of an innovative Canadian insulation technology in a historic listed building in Aberdeenshire with a particular emphasis on providing insights into workforce skills needs. The trial was funded by the Scottish Government and the European Regional Development Fund. An ‘insulation job’ worksheet is developed as a result of the project, which can aid effective project management of insulation jobs in the future. It is evident that the current skills in the industry could be made adaptable to the skills needs for insulating historic listed buildings. Multi-skilling [in particular for small–medium size enterprise (SMEs)] may become inevitable if the size of the project is small as it was the case with the project presented in this paper. Providing learning support for local SMEs, who are still building-up their capability in insulation technologies, is thus essential. Indeed knowledge sharing and dissemination of case studies for successful retrofitting (e.g. insulation) of buildings, in particular historic ones, can inform future development of ‘Low Carbon Skills’ policy and action.
- historic buildings