Hydrogen and net zero to underpin levelling-up

The Government has unveiled its strategy to level-up the UK, with the Levelling Up White Paper published on Wednesday 2 February 2022.

It details how the “Green Industrial Revolution” will require significant investment in new infrastructure and production processes using new technologies. This could average £50 to £60bn of capital investment per year by the late 2020s and into the 2030s.

As well as recognising that investment has the potential to benefit disproportionately less well-performing parts of the UK, particularly those with a rich heritage of manufacturing and engineering such as the North West, the strategy notes that there is also likely to be a big challenge when it comes to skills.

Hydrogen will be the foundation of the region’s transition and the UK’s green future, with rollout of the low-carbon energy source set to create jobs and new opportunities, underpinning levelling up.

Professor Joe Howe, Chair of the North West Hydrogen Alliance and Executive Director, Energy Research Institute at the University of Chester, said:

“Hydrogen will be essential to delivering Net Zero and driving the green industrial revolution. In regions like the North West the burgeoning hydrogen economy will not only deliver the decarbonisation of our homes, industries and transport systems, it will drive new skills, thousands of jobs and millions of pounds of investment.

“We welcome the Levelling Up White Paper and urge Government to continue to support hydrogen as making a significant contribution to levelling up the UK.”