Greater Manchester is set to benefit from a new exploratory agreement with Japanese electronics giant Panasonic to use green hydrogen to decarbonise sites across the city.
The deal will see the use of Panasonic’s RE100 hydrogen fuel cell technology across a number of different sites such as hospitals which according to the organisations, will be the “first real use cases in the UK.”
Panasonic’s RE100 technology supplies renewable electricity in industrial and public sector settings. As reported by our sister site Solar Power Portal, the Japanese firm outlined its plan to decarbonise its Welsh manufacturing facility through the use of the RE100 technology alongside solar photovoltaic (PV) and battery energy storage.
Greater Manchester has also signed agreements with SSE Energy Solutions, Electricity North West, Manchester Metropolitan University and Carlton Power, developer of the 200MW Trafford Green Hydrogen scheme, to support the integration of hydrogen into the area.
SSE Energy Solutions will work with the partners to identify potential trial sites in addition to providing the necessary energy infrastructure and generation required. Electricity North West, the regional power network operator in the area, will oversee the connection to the grid with enhancement and integration to the existing network.
Manchester Metropolitan University (Manchester Met) will contribute research and knowledge in the hydrogen and fuel cell industry whereas Carlton Power plans to provide green hydrogen from its Trafford scheme.
The use of green hydrogen will support Greater Manchester in its ambition to be carbon neutral by 2038.
Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, said: “I’m excited for a future where our hospitals and businesses are powered through 100 percent renewable energy, making a positive difference to the city-region and the daily lives of Greater Manchester residents.
“Collaboration and innovation will be vital if we are to succeed in our ambition to be carbon neutral by 2038, and this partnership proves the benefits of our international approach to delivering net zero.
“Working with Panasonic and our other partners will also provide a strong foundation for more opportunities to bring green jobs, skills, and investment to Greater Manchester.”
Manchester continues its renewable ambitions
The city of Manchester continues to be a test bed for various low-carbon and renewable technologies aimed at supporting the UK’s energy transition.
One example of this is via the University of Manchester’s partnership with the National Grid in which the two organisations declared they would explore the creation of a retrofill solution to remove sulphur hexafluoride (SF6) across its network of high-voltage equipment.
This was said to be a “crucial development in the decarbonisation of the UK’s power network” with the National Grid citing that SF6 has a global warming potential that is 25,200 times greater than CO2.
Alongside this development, Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust and Hitachi ZeroCarbon hosted a series of trials for vehicle-to-grid (V2G) technology across Withington Community Hospital and Trafford General Hospital.
The trial involved five Hitchai-funded V2G units, developed by Indra, and found that the Foundation Trust was able to reduce its peak hour use electricity costs by £90 a month.
The full results of the trial were released in October 2022 and can be found via Current+’s coverage here.