A new £40 million hydrogen project in the UK has been tipped to reduce reliance on fossil fuels by a third. This is a key breakthrough at a time when the country is experiencing an energy crisis and escalating bills. Located in Cumbria, the Barrow Green Hydrogen development will use a 35MW electrolyser to generate 3500 tonnes of hydrogen on an annual basis. The process involves using electrolysis to generate hydrogen, and it can be fuelled with non-fossil energy sources.
Homegrown, clean energy sources are being flagged by analysts, green groups and many ministers as the way to help wean the UK off natural gas, reduce emissions and ultimately drive down bills whilst improving the energy security of supply. And this new project in Cumbria could be a bit step forwards in achieving these goals.
The project will be led by Carlton Power and developed with a series of partners from the private and public sectors, including Electricity North West. Kimberley Clark has already signed up to an agreement with Carlton Power to purchase hydrogen for their manufacturing facility in Barrow-in-Furness, which produces consumer products for global brands such as Huggies and Andrex.
If all goes to plan, the scheme will move into its commercial operation by 2025, subject to finance and planning. In addition to generating clean and domestic energy, it will also reduce 25,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions from the environment every year that it operates. The electrolyser that produces the hydrogen will use clean energy to operate in a non-fossil fuel cycle.
If successful, this project will also act as a powerful example to encourage other similar projects across the UK and to position hydrogen energy to become another powerful source of clean and sustainable energy for Britain.