UK govt presents vision for low-carbon industrial sector

HyNet North West. Image by Twitter, @HyNetNW

March 17 (Renewables Now) - The UK government today unveiled its Industrial Decarbonisation Strategy that sets out its ambition to become the first major economy with a low-carbon industrial sector.

Business and Energy Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng also announced GBP 1 billion (USD 1.4bn/EUR 1.2bn) in funding to cut carbon emissions from industry and public buildings such as hospitals, schools and council buildings, in line with the country's 2050 net-zero target.

The strategy envisages cutting industrial emissions by two-thirds by 2035, from 2018 levels, and by at least 90% by 2050. It is expected that by 2030, the UK industry will replace 20 TWh of its fossil fuel energy supply with low-carbon alternatives.

Of the announced funding, GBP 171 million come from the Industrial Decarbonisation Challenge and will fund nine projects that will study the deployment of decarbonisation infrastructure such as carbon capture, usage and storage (CCUS) and hydrogen. The projects are located in Scotland, South Wales and North West, Humber and Teesside in England. The HyNet North West project, for instance, will get almost GBP 33 million to decarbonise industry in the North West of England by capturing and storing emissions and creating a hydrogen economy.

Through the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme, the government has also allocated GBP 932 million to 429 projects across England to cut emissions from public buildings. Measures include the use of heat pumps, insulation, LED lighting and solar panels.

The Industrial Decarbonisation Strategy will aim to support the existing industry to decarbonise and stimulate new, low-carbon industries to grow. The government wants to provide businesses with long-term certainty to invest in home-grown decarbonisation technology and prevent the outsourcing of industrial activity to high-emission countries.

"While reaching our climate targets will require extensive change across our economy, we must do so in a way that protects jobs, creates new industries and attracts inward investment - without pushing emissions and business abroad," Kwarteng said.

The strategy can be viewed here.

(GBP 1 = USD 1.391/EUR 1.168)

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Browse all articles from Plamena Tisheva

Plamena has been a UK-focused reporter for many years. As part of the Renewables Now team she is taking a keen interest in policy moves.

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