In Beverley and Holderness a first-of-its-kind, low-carbon hydrogen production plant is being proposed by Norwegian energy company Equinor. H2H (Hydrogen to Humber) Saltend will be a 60-megawatt facility in the Saltend Chemicals Park. The plant could be operational as soon as 2026 and could cut nearly one million tonnes of CO2 emissions each year at Saltend; an extraordinary 30 per cent reduction. Importantly, H2H Saltend would act as a catalyst for many other decarbonisation projects across the region and eventually across the whole of the North of England.
Hydrogen is significant because of its role in decarbonising heavily polluting industries like chemical production, oil refining and heavy transport like shipping, trains and HGVs. Excitingly, it can also be used to replace traditional domestic heating. The Government wants to see a full hydrogen town by the end of the decade and Equinor has recently joined forces with Cadent to investigate a potential hydrogen town trial. Underground hydrogen storage facilities, such as in Aldbrough, are also vitally important to an emerging hydrogen economy and is an area I’m seeking to ensure isn’t overlooked.
In an increasingly climate-conscious global marketplace, the EU and others around the world are moving towards higher taxes on imports of commodities which do not meet certain emissions standards. This means goods like steel and chemicals which are made while remaining net-zero can gain an international advantage while benefitting the environment at the same time. This goes to show we no longer have to choose between the environment and the economy.
This is the Levelling Up agenda at its best, delivering for my constituents and for communities across the North, building outstanding British capability and making us a world-leader in cutting-edge tech.
MP for Beverley and Holderness