Something in the North West’s water

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The Peel Group, a major land and property company, and gas distributors Cadent are considering developing a hydrogen network between Greater Manchester and Liverpool, based around a central hub at Ellesmere Port.

According to a new report by Peel, the delivery of a ‘North West hydrogen cluster’ could usher in a new era of hydrogen-fuelled vehicles and cut CO2 emissions by 10 million tonnes per year by 2050.

The Peel Group report builds on Cadent’s recent conceptual study. It outlines the potential for a major hydrogen infrastructure project involving natural gas steam reforming, carbon capture and storage and hydrogen supply to industry, with supply to domestic consumers through the existing gas distribution network.

Key cluster benefits

  • unlock £1.6billion of GVA by 2050
  • create over 2,300 peak jobs
  • reduce carbon dioxide by up to 10 million tonnes per annum by 2050
  • improve air quality for Greater Manchester and Liverpool city regions by using hydrogen as a road transport fuel, decreasing emissions of NOx and particulates

Peel also says it is working with other firms towards an ‘exemplar’ project, the development coming shortly after the launch of the UK’s first Energy Innovation District in the North West, an area promoted by the Cheshire Energy Hub to stimulate future energy technology.

Attracting inward investment

On announcing the report Dr. Tony Smith, of Peel Environmental, said: “This report shows there is real opportunity to attract inward investment, create thousands of jobs and put the North West at the forefront of the UK’s hydrogen industry.”

“Making it a reality will take collaboration.  We’re working alongside some of the biggest names in the energy-intensive industries to promote an exemplar and deliverable hydrogen project, which responds directly to the government’s recently published Clean Growth Strategy.”

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