North West CO2 reduction schemes among government-approved projects

Padeswood plant, North Wales

A range of projects around the North West aimed at reducing carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from industry have received the go-ahead from the Government.

The Department for Business, Energy, and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has now named the initial tranche of low carbon hydrogen production and industrial carbon capture projects that will enter into commercial negotiations with government ahead of making final investment decisions.

Six HyNet schemes, including Vertex Hydrogen, Hanson’s Padeswood Cement Plant, Viridor’s Runcorn Energy Recovery Facility, Covanta’s Protos Energy Recovery Facility, Essar’s Stanlow Manufacturing Complex and Buxton Lime Net Zero, received approval to begin reducing CO2 emissions from industry from the mid-2020’s as part of the HyNet decarbonisation cluster.

The news follows HyNet’s selection by government, in October 2021, to fast-track the decarbonisation of the industrial cluster located across North West England and North Wales.

This was known as Phase-1 of the Track 1 cluster sequencing process.

Today’s August 12) announcement confirms which individual plants within HyNet will receive support from Government as part of Phase-2 of the cluster sequencing process. This news will result in HyNet:

  • Capturing more than three million tonnes per year of carbon from energy intensive industry
  • Producing 1GW of low carbon hydrogen
  • Supporting the creation of 6,000 new roles, as well as helping to safeguard the 340,000 existing manufacturing jobs in the region
  • Unlocking more than £5bn of investment in the HyNet project
  • Providing businesses and consumers with low carbon products, including chemicals, food and drink, cement, paper and metals.

Government has deemed carbon capture and storage (CCS) and low carbon hydrogen essential technologies to be deployed at scale as we decarbonise our economy. HyNet will start locking away CO2 emissions from industry, and producing low carbon hydrogen at scale, by the mid-2020s.

David Parkin, HyNet project director, said: “This will give the North West the opportunity to produce the UK’s first zero carbon cement, and to abate emissions from the UK’s largest energy from waste facility.

“The hydrogen produced from Vertex will allow vital industries such as chemicals, food and drink, paper and metal production to fully decarbonise, retaining and creating new high value manufacturing jobs.

“By 2030, HyNet will be capturing and storing 10 million tonnes of carbon dioxide – a greenhouse gas – each year, a quarter of all emissions across the North “est of the UK.”

He added: “Today’s announcement is a critical step in ensuring HyNet gets delivered, delivering real decarbonisation progress and delivering economic benefit to the region.

“The transition to a low carbon economy provides the UK with a fantastic opportunity to protect and create highly skilled jobs, create a sustainable supply chain, and provide UK businesses with the ability to deliver the environmentally-friendly products that consumers are increasingly demanding.

“HyNet will create over 6,000 jobs across the region, safeguarding highly skilled manufacturing jobs and bring investment work £31 billion into the UK economy, helping to level up across the country.”

Joe Seifert, CEO of Vertex Hydrogen said: “We are at the heart of the HyNet cluster and are committed to delivering a world class hydrogen economy with substantial capital investment to reduce carbon emissions, secure and grow UK manufacturing jobs and deliver value for money for stakeholders.

“We see this announcement as further support to the hydrogen sector as the UK positions itself as a global leader in this emerging industry.”