Orsted-1

Case Study

Energy Estuary 2.0

Based on its research excellence in renewable energy, the University of Hull is helping to establish the Humber as an exemplar region for growth from clean energy.  We are leading a regional business consortium that will harness low carbon innovation to further boost the regional economy, whilst improving the economic and social wellbeing of the population.

Challenge

The time to act is now – for the planet and our region’s economy

The recent IPCC report by the world’s leading climate scientists warned there are only a dozen years for global warming to be kept to a maximum of 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels. The UK Climate Change Act 2008 set a carbon reduction target of 80% by 2050. Consumer awareness of their carbon footprint and consequently demand for low carbon energy and products have never been higher.

The UK Government made Clean Growth one of four key priorities in its 2018 Industrial Strategy. It predicted that the UK’s clean energy economy could grow at four times the rate of GDP, making the move to cleaner economic growth, through low carbon technologies and the efficient use of resources, one of the greatest industrial opportunities of our time.

The Humber Region is ideally placed to capitalise on this demand for low carbon technology. We have an opportunity to lead the world in addressing the global challenge of climate change and secure our future for generations to come.

Approach

UK Research and Innovation has shortlisted a consortium of Humber businesses, led by the University of Hull, to develop a proposal to Strength in Places (SIP) – their multi-million pound economic regeneration funding programme. 

Energy Estuary 2.0 sets out plans for a SIP investment of over £50m from UKRI and consortium partners, promising a transformative effect on the economy and the people of the region. The bid aims to establish the Humber Estuary as the most energy resilient region of the UK, accelerating clean energy industry growth by supporting innovation in energy storage, conversion, distribution and demand management. It will support businesses to seize emerging opportunities, creating 10,000 new jobs and firmly establishing the Humber as a global centre of clean energy expertise and an exemplar of estuarial clean growth.

Energy Estuary 2.0 – Outline projects

Working together, harnessing the ambition and expertise of industry alongside academic rigour, R&D and innovation activity, we will develop a new economic model that will demonstrate globally the benefits of building a zero-carbon economy. The SIP bid aims to transform the region, through 10 inter-related work packages, across four complementary themes:

  • Innovations in power generation – offshore wind and fuel creation from waste
  • Energy storage and conversion – wind power conversion to hydrogen and ammonia, versatile usage of hydrogen and waste derived energy
  • Energy management – Smart microgrids to balance supply and demand, low energy heating and cooling systems
  • Sustainability, skills and systems – environmental impact, human impact, modelling novel business operations for an energy ecosystem.

Benefits

Our vision is to create a resilient, inclusive and innovation-driven regional economy taking full advantage of the clean energy investments in the Humber. Innovations in energy storage, conversion, distribution and demand management will boost the regional economy, whilst a parallel programme of energy from waste and low energy innovations will engage and empower the local population, raising aspirations, developing skills, creating new ventures and jobs, and improving the economic and social wellbeing of the population.

To help shape the future of the Energy Estuary 2.0, contact sipf@hull.ac.uk