Leading energy companies Drax Group, Equinor and National Grid Ventures are spearheading the ZERO CARBON HUMBER campaign with the Humber Local Enterprise Partnership and CATCH, a trade body for industrials in the region. The campaign responds to the Government’s world-leading ambition to establish the first ‘net zero’ carbon industrial cluster in the UK by 2040.
Feasibility work is already underway to show how pioneering carbon capture, usage and storage (CCUS) technology can make the Humber a net zero carbon economy while providing the foundation for the roll-out of low carbon hydrogen as a fuel across the wider Yorkshire region.
To mark the launch of the campaign, the consortium is meeting with MPs and policymakers at a Westminster event where they will explain the benefits of a new zero carbon hydrogen economy in the Humber – both in terms of jobs, clean growth and export opportunities, as well as the positive impacts it will have in combatting the climate crisis.
The Humber is home to the UK’s biggest industrial economy, employing 55,000 people in the region and contributing £18bn to UK GDP each year, leveraging its rich heritage of industry, skills and trade. It hosts around 100 chemical and refining companies alone, which together account for around 12% of total employment in the UK chemicals sector.
But the Humber is also the most carbon intensive industrial region in the country. If industrial business across the Humber fail to decarbonise, they will face costs of between £1.4bn and £4.2bn in carbon taxes alone by 2040, making the Humber less attractive to global investors, putting jobs and supply chains at risk, damaging the opportunity to attract new businesses to the region.