Cheshire West and Chester Council welcomes HyNet announcement

19 October 2021

Cheshire West and Chester Council has welcomed the news that Ellesmere Port has been chosen as one of two Carbon Capture, Usage and Storage (CCUS) projects in the country.

Greg Hands, Minister of State for Energy, Clean Growth and Climate Change announced today (19 October) that the CCS Infrastructure Fund of £1 billion will provide industry with the certainty required to deploy CCUS at pace and at scale, has completed the first phase of the evaluation of the five cluster submissions received by his Department.

The statement included confirmation that the HyNet and East Coast Clusters have been confirmed as track 1 clusters for the mid-2020s and will be taken forward into Track-1 negotiations. If the clusters represent value for money for the consumer and the taxpayer then subject to final decisions of Ministers, they will receive support under the government’s CCUS Programme.

Councillor Louise Gittins, Leader of Cheshire West and Chester Council said: “On behalf of the Council and our partners I’d like to congratulate the HyNet team, this is a major element of the plans to see Ellesmere Port as a national and international exemplar for the ‘Green Industrial Revolution’ and to drive forward the new low carbon economy of the future.

“We declared a Climate Emergency in 2019, following consultation with residents pledging to make the Council carbon neutral by 2030 and the borough carbon neutral by 2045. Today’s announcement is a giant stride towards this.”

Partners including the Cheshire and Warrington LEP and the University of Chester have added their congratulations.

Clare Hayward MBE, DL, Chair, Cheshire and Warrington LEP, said: “We are absolutely delighted by today’s announcement that HyNet North West low carbon and energy project will be one of the first two to be delivered in the UK.

“We have ambitious targets to reach net zero and make Cheshire and Warrington a world leader in low carbon technologies and innovation and this is a huge step forward for the decarbonisation of our region.

“The North West and North Wales is a region which has the largest number of people employed in manufacturing in the UK and has the skills base to drive the hydrogen economy and help us to create the green jobs for the future.

“HyNet is a result of a great partnership with all of the stakeholders involved from across the region. We look forward to working together to put our ambitions into action.”

HyNet is a low carbon hydrogen and Carbon capture, utilisation and storage project offering a low cost, low risk route to decarbonise the North West industrial cluster and other sectors of the regional economy. It will play a major role in starting the hydrogen economy, delivering a material contribution to net zero and considerable economic benefit.

The HyNet project aims to start the transition to a hydrogen economy delivering 80 per cent of the Prime Minister’s 2030 UK target for low carbon hydrogen.

Councillor Gittins acknowledged that HyNet will produce ‘blue hydrogen’ “The ideal for the environment is the production of green hydrogen, however today’s announcement will lead us towards the development of the UKs most advanced clean and green energy industrial cluster helping to reduce the environmental impact of industry, creating one of the UKs first ‘SuperPlaces’.”

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