A proposal for funding to develop a comprehensive plan for decarbonising the Humber has been submitted to the government’s Industrial Decarbonisation Challenge Fund.
It was submitted by the Humber Local Enterprise Partnership and membership organisation CATCH alongside industry, with the £2.6 million project – £1.658 million of which the organisations are hoping will be government funding – to help the Humber move closer to large-scale decarbonisation.
The Zero Carbon Humber project – which is being run by a consortium including Drax, Equinor and National Grid Ventures – is exploring how a large-scale carbon capture usage and storage (CCUS) network could be paired with a hydrogen production facility to decarbonise the area.
It is aiming to create the world’s first net zero carbon industrial cluster by 2040, located in the Humber region, with the potential to capture and store around 10% of UK carbon dioxide emissions per year.
The application for funding comes after initial funding from Innovate UK in April, which enabled the first phase of feasibility work.
This found that the Humber is likely to need both fuel-switching, such as to hydrogen, and CCUS to achieve the scale of decarbonisation required. This is because around half of the area’s industrial emissions come from chemical reactions in industry processes and these cannot currently be abated by fuel switching.
The newest element of the project – the Humber Cluster Plan the funding would support – is to identify future actions the Humber can take to accelerate the green recovery, including identifying opportunities for inward investment and those looking to diversify to take advantage of low carbon infrastructure.
Stephen Parnaby OBE, chair of the Humber LEP, said: “It is imperative that the Humber region decarbonises on a huge scale – but in a way that safeguards our strategically important industries and creates new jobs and business opportunities. Nowhere has greater potential to be at the heart of the green recovery than the Humber.”