Plans unveiled for low carbon power station at Hynet cluster

The partnership between HyNet North West and InterGen could reduce carbon emissions from the power station in Runcorn by more than 150,000 tonnes every year

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Fresh plans to develop a low carbon power station in the Liverpool City Region have been unveiled by HyNet North West and InterGen.

Located at Intergen’s Rocksavage power plant in Runcorn, it could have the potential to reduce carbon emissions by more than 150,000 tonnes every year – the equivalent of taking 60,000 cars off the road annually.

The plans are part of the HyNet low carbon cluster, the UK’s ‘first’ hydrogen and carbon capture network, which is expected to clean up the North West region whilst unlocking a clean energy economy.

The HyNet North West project, which is based on the production of hydrogen from natural gas and includes the development of carbon capture and storage (CCS) infrastructure, was granted £72 million in funding in March 2021.

It is expected to reduce the region’s carbon emissions by 25% within five years from 2025.

InterGen, which has owned and operated the gas-fired Rocksavage plant for nearly 25 years, expects it will have enough hydrogen produced by Hynet by 2028 to move towards a 100% net zero power generation plant.

InterGen’s Rocksavage Plant Manager Dan Fosberg said: “Rocksavage has been safely generating energy to power the north west for nearly 25 years. But in order to meet the UK’s net zero targets, traditional generation needs to adapt. HyNet North West will allow us to pivot our operations as we transition to a low carbon world.

“The HyNet North West project milestones mean that Rocksavage could be the first plant in the UK to blend hydrogen with natural gas, a step forward for the industry in the target for net zero. Once the gas turbine technology becomes available, we will explore options with HyNet North West to create a zero emissions power station using 100% hydrogen.”

The project will support Liverpool City Region’s commitment to reach net zero carbon by 2040 as well as the UK’s 2050 net zero target.

Steve Rotheram, Metro Mayor of Liverpool City Region said: “Putting the Liverpool City Region at the heart of the Green Industrial Revolution is one of my top priorities. With our existing strengths in green energy, we have the potential to become the UK’s renewable energy coast.

“I am committed to doubling the number of green jobs in our region and exciting projects like HyNet will be a key part of that. We’re going to lead the way, not only in doing our bit to tackle climate change but in pioneering new and innovative technology that in turn attracts more jobs and investment to our region.”