The HyNet North West project has been given £72 million of funding to get underway and could play a crucial role in delivering net zero to the UK.
The project is based on the production of hydrogen from natural gas and includes the development of a new hydrogen pipeline and the creation of the ‘UK’s first’ carbon capture and storage (CCS) infrastructure.
It is being developed by partners from across the North West region, including Progressive Energy, Cadent, CF Fertilisers, Eni, Essar, Hanson, INOVYN and the University of Chester.
The funding comprises of £33m from UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) through the Industrial Decarbonisation Challenge (IDC) fund and £39m of consortium partner contribution.
From 2025, HyNet will start converting natural gas into low carbon hydrogen at the Stanlow Refinery, with carbon dioxide captured and stored offshore in the Liverpool Bay gas fields. The new pipeline will then transport the clean hydrogen to power industry, transport and homes across North West England and North Wales.
It is predicted that the CCS project will reduce carbon emissions by 10 million tonnes every year by 2030, which is the equivalent of removing four million cars from the road. HyNet is also estimated to deliver 80% of the government’s nationwide target of 5GW of low carbon hydrogen by the end of the decade.
It is expected to create 6,000 new jobs and retrain those in existing manufacturing sectors, while kick-starting the UK’s hydrogen economy.
HyNet is expected to become operational in 2025.
David Parkin, Director of Progressive Energy and HyNet North West Project Director commented: “Delivering net zero requires a transformation of our energy system. We know we cannot reach net zero without decarbonising industry.
“HyNet North West is an exciting project of strategic importance to both the region and the UK. It offers a once-in-a-generation opportunity to create real change in energy production and consumption, establishing a cleaner world for future generations.
“It will unlock the low carbon hydrogen economy in North West England and North Wales, not only reducing emissions but also creating and safeguarding jobs.”