New Delhi: The Cheshire West & Chester Council has approved Essar Energy Transition's (EET) plans to set up the first large-scale, low-carbon hydrogen production plant in the UK at the Stanlow manufacturing complex. "Consisting of two plants (HPP1 and HPP2), the hydrogen hub will enable local industrial and power generation businesses to switch from fossil fuels to low carbon energy. This will help reduce the North West's carbon emissions by 2.5 million tonne every year - the equivalent of taking 1.1 million cars off the roads," the company said in a statement.
The hydrogen will be used locally by the Essar refinery and other major manufacturers in the region, including Tata Chemicals, Encirc and Pilkington to create the first low carbon refining operations, glass and chemicals manufacturing sites in the world. The EET hydrogen hub will help secure and grow vital industries, create jobs and unlock billions of pounds of related investment.
EET will develop the hydrogen hub in phases with the first plant (HPP1) at 350 MW capacity, the second (HPP2) at 1,000MW capacity and an overall target capacity of 4,000MW+ by 2030.
"These plants are critical to meet the UK's hydrogen and industrial decarbonisation targets and enable the critical hydrogen infrastructure," the statement said.
The development is a key pillar of HyNet - the UK's leading industrial decarbonisation cluster. Construction is anticipated to start on HPP1 in 2024 with low-carbon hydrogen production estimated to begin at the site by 2027.
Richard Holden, HPP1 Project Manager at EET Hydrogen, said: "This is the largest low carbon hydrogen project in the UK and one of the most advanced in the world. It is a vital piece of the North West's journey to net-zero, underpinning HyNet and providing the opportunity for manufacturers in the region to decarbonise their processes and support UK jobs."
"We have worked closely with regional stakeholders and are delighted to obtain this important approval for the project as we move from ambition to action."