The latest report from the Committee on Climate Change (CCC), ‘Reducing UK emissions: 2020 Progress Report to Parliament’, is good news for hydrogen.
This annual ‘stock-take’ gauges the UK Government’s performance on delivering against its climate change objectives and makes recommendations on what needs to happen to achieve Net Zero.
As someone with a life-long interest in the environment and a career working in the energy sector, I was delighted to read this year’s report. There is a great deal of sense in the recommendations it makes, particularly for ‘investments in low-carbon and climate-resilient infrastructure’.
The area where Cadent can contribute most and most quickly is energy networks. The report says ‘Low-carbon hydrogen is critical to achieving Net Zero and needs to be deployed at scale during the 2020s. Given the potential of the fuel across multiple sectors, a cross-cutting vision and strategy for a hydrogen economy will be required from Government, with production and use starting from the early 2020s. Risk sharing mechanisms for the first users and producers of low-carbon hydrogen are likely to be required, in order to develop a market for low-carbon hydrogen.’
We agree – both the electricity sector and the gas sector have carbon reducing innovations ready to implement right now. In our case, the approach proved by HyDeploy, at Keele University, is technology that could be adopted across most of the UK as quickly as the electricity innovations, bringing with it an estimated CO2 reduction of 6 million tonnes, equivalent to taking 2.5 million cars off the road, instantly.
HyDeploy is the first time hydrogen has been injected into a natural gas network in the UK since the days of town gas. Some 100 households have been safely using a blend of 20% hydrogen and 80% natural gas for heating and cooking,
We are keen to help make all of this happen at the pace that’s required. We can support government in planning their joined-up hydrogen strategy; thinking through green gas production incentives; accelerating the decarbonisation of industrial clusters; and being involved in large scale pilots demonstrating what can be done and enabling rapid learning. We fully support the CCC in its efforts to move the UK forward in terms of addressing climate change and are ready to play our part with hydrogen technologies as soon as we are given the go ahead. Let’s hope that comes soon.