Over 60,000 green jobs are to be created as the result of £166.5 million of funding announced today (24 May) by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).
This funding is to drive developments in technologies needed for the green industrial revolution, including carbon capture, greenhouse gas removal and hydrogen. It is being awarded to a mix of innovators, businesses, academics and heavy industry across the UK.
£60 million – the largest chunk of funding – will support the development of low carbon hydrogen in the UK, and help identify and scale-up more efficient solutions for making clean hydrogen from water using electricity.
This follows the government announcing in March that £171 million from the Industrial Decarbonisation Challenge had been allocated to nine green tech projects around Britain, with these predominantly being hydrogen and carbon capture, usage and storage (CCUS).
One of these is the South Wales Industrial Cluster, for which Lightsource BP is developing solar-powered green hydrogen. Meanwhile, ScottishPower has submitted a planning application for up to 40MW of solar, up to 50MW of battery storage and a 20MW electrolyser as part of its Green Hydrogen for Scotland project. Tidal power and vanadium flow batteries are joining forces in Orkney to produce continuous green hydrogen as part of a project located on the island of Eday, at the European Marine Energy Centre’s tidal energy test site.
As well as hydrogen, this funding is set to support the development of the next generation of CCUS so they can be deployed at scale by 2030, with £20 million allocated for this.
The government's commitments to carbon capture were last reinforced in the National Infrastructure Strategy, with £1 billion committed to bringing forward four CCS clusters by 2030. These plans were first announced in the 2020 Budget, with Chancellor Rishi Sunak at the time stating that a CCS Infrastructure Fund was being set up to fund this consisting of at least £800 million.
Additionally, £37.5 million has been allocated to fund the largest government programme of greenhouse gas removal methods, while £20 million is going towards establishing a new virtual Industrial Decarbonisation and Innovation Centre and £16.5 million to developing new technologies and processes that help energy intensive sectors cut their emission through the Industrial Energy Transformation Fund.
£8 million will go towards projects to develop industry innovations, such as repurposing textile waste, new clay production techniques for the ceramics industry and concrete manufacturing that supports the rapid recovery and sustainability of UK industry.
Lastly, £4.7 million will establish a new Transforming Foundation Industries Research and Innovation Hub to be led by Cranfield University.
Some of the projects and businesses to receive some of this funding include Phillips 66 Limited, Humberside, which will receive over £500,000 to explore switching fuel in its gas refinery’s industrial fired heaters with renewable and low carbon hydrogen and William Cook Holdings Limited, Sheffield, which will receive over £38,000 to improve energy efficiency and recover waste heat from its furnaces to produce electricity, among other uses.
Energy minister Anne-Marie Trevelyan said: "We are determined to tackle climate change and make it win-win for both our planet and our economy. Today’s major cash boost – targeted at our most polluting industries - will encourage the rapid development of the technologies we need to reign in our emissions and transition to a green economy, one that reduces costs for business, boosts investment and create jobs."