Government to spend £20m on offshore wind farms and £5m on ‘hydrogen hub’: The Budget funding helping UK reach net zero emissions
- In Budget speech, Rishi Sunak says £20m will go to offshore wind technology
- Another £4.8m will support the development of a hydrogen hub in Wales
- The Government target is for the UK to reach net zero emissions by 2050
The Government is launching a £20million programme to support the building of floating offshore wind technology, Rishi Sunak announced in today’s Budget.
The Chancellor is hoping the new development, plus other proposals, will help the UK reach its current target of net zero emissions by 2050.
As part of its plans to expand offshore wind technology, the Government will make an offer of support to the Able Marine Energy Park on Humberside to upgrade ports infrastructure for the next generation of offshore wind.
A £20m programme will launch, supporting the building of floating offshore wind technology
It will also sign a memorandum of understanding with Teesworks Offshore Manufacturing Centre on Teesside, to support the development of another offshore wind port hub.
It is hoped that upgraded ports infrastructure in Humberside will attract investment in offshore wind manufacturing and support up to 3,000 green jobs.
Sunak also announced that the UK would provide £4.8million of funding to support the development of a hydrogen hub in Holyhead, Wales.
This will pilot the creation of hydrogen from renewable energy, which will be used as a zero-emission fuel in HGVs.
Sunak said the project would create up to 500 jobs in Anglesey, Wales.
It is not the Government’s first investment in hydrogen. It also funded two semi-detached show homes in Gateshead – the first to be built with appliances fuelled entirely by the gas.
Hydrogen is a ‘clean fuel’ because when burned, it produces only water.
In the Budget, Sunak also announced a UK-wide competition to implement several first-of-a-kind energy storage prototypes or technology demonstrators. The government will provide £68million of funding for this.
It is hoped this will reduce the cost of net zero by storing excess low-carbon energy over longer periods than is currently possible.
A £4million UK-wide competition will also be launched for the first phase of a biomass feedstocks programme.
This will identify ways to increase the production of green energy crops and forest products that can be used for energy.
Rishi Sunak delivered the Budget today, promising millions more spent on ‘green’ projects
The Government will also provide £27million for the Aberdeen Energy Transition Zone, helping to support North East Scotland to play a leading role in meeting the UK’s net zero ambitions.
It claimed this would transform the region into a globally-competitive hub for cleaner energies such as offshore wind and hydrogen.
It is also going to provide a further £5million for the Global Underwater Hub, an underwater engineering facility in Aberdeen, on top of the £1.3million committed last year.
Up to £2million will be spent on further developing industry proposals as part of the Government’s support for the North Sea Transition Deal.
Taken together, these proposals aim to support areas like Aberdeen, which traditionally relied on the oil industry, in their transition to a low-carbon future.
The Government said it would also pay up to £30million, for the Global Centre for Rail Excellence in South Wales. This is intended to support innovation in the UK’s rail industry, including the testing of ‘cutting-edge, green’ technology.
The Budget also addressed the issue of carbon offsetting, which is likely to come to the fore once Britons start to jet off around the world again.
Such schemes allow individuals and firms to invest in environmental projects around the world in order to balance out their own carbon footprint.
To help this, it has been revealed Dame Clara Furse, the former London Stock Exchange Group chief executive, will establish a new group with the aim of positioning the UK and the City of London as the leading global market for high quality voluntary carbon offsets.
The working group will draw on the UK’s financial expertise and entrepreneurship and build on the work of crossing-cutting initiatives such as the Taskforce for Scaling Voluntary Carbon Markets.
The carbon offset market is expected to rise in the coming years as firms look to buy carbon credits to help meet their climate targets