Hydrogen East hosts first quarterly stakeholder update


Hydrogen East hosted its first quarterly stakeholder update event on 20 October which saw more than 110 registrations. The event gave an update on Hydrogen East’s progress since its launch event in July 2020, covering its three main workstreams.

Initial opening remarks were made by Nigel Cornwall in respect of ‘a busy three months’ for Hydrogen East, pointing towards progress made across three diverse workstreams promoting the development of East Anglia’s hydrogen economy.

Mark Neller, Director at Arup, gave a policy and market update referencing the greater political focus being given to hydrogen. He mentioned the expected inclusion of hydrogen in the long-anticipated Energy White Paper, as well as release of a Hydrogen Strategy in early-2021.

Michael Brown of Hydrogen East gave an overview of Hydrogen East’s first project workstream, Bacton SNS 2.0 Energy Hub. Bacton was highlighted as a key strategic asset for East Anglia in creating a project for major innovation and demonstration of hydrogen. The project will produce a scoping study to support definition of a more detailed work plan and route-map to development of an energy hub incorporating old and new gas technologies at Bacton. This will include extensive energy mapping work, alongside stakeholder and market sizing assessments. The project is due to commence in November 2020 and reach completion by April 2021. Expected project partners are The Oil & Gas Technology Centre, Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult, New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership and North Norfolk District Council.

Charlotte Farmer of Hydrogen East went on to detail the second project workstream being developed by Hydrogen East. The project, New Anglia Clean Transport Hub (NACTH), will build the case for hydrogen and low-carbon fuel usage across road, rail, shipping and agriculture. A base skeletal structure for the hub’s road system was given across Norfolk and Suffolk including the A11, A14, A12 and A47. The project is due to be officially launched at an online webinar on 27 October, where a more in-depth view of early-findings and project process will be given, along with presentations from external speakers at BOC and Arup.

Johnathan Reynolds concluded Hydrogen East’s current workstreams with a presentation on the Sizewell/ Leiston Energy Hub. He outlined EDF Energy’s Sizewell Clean Energy Hub concept which could see 2-4GW of flexible electrical output, green hydrogen and power and heat for local uses. He also pointed towards potential development of a 2MW hydrogen electrolyser demonstration project at Sizewell B. A project inception paper will be produced in January 2021, along with output issues and options in July 2021 and recommendations by September 2021. In the meantime, project support will be sought from EDF and relevant local authorities.

Nigel Cornwall gave closing remarks, outlining what has been a positive initiation by Hydrogen East, albeit just the beginning with significant work now to be done. A call was given to those organisations interested in being involved in project workstreams in order to further engagement, discussions and learnings, and to enable results for the East Anglian region.

A recording of the event can be viewed here.

The event slide deck can be viewed and downloaded here.