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Costain Part of Hydrogen Southwest Consortium to Accelerate the Transition to a Net Zero Future

By June 23, 2022 3   min read  (595 words)

June 23, 2022 |

Fuel Cells Works, Costain Part of Hydrogen Southwest Consortium to Accelerate the Transition to a Net Zero Future
  • Costain one of nine leading organisations that have joined forces to drive the development of a hydrogen infrastructure ecosystem.
  • Consortium will enable cross-sector partnerships to produce, utilise, capture, store, and transport hydrogen across the Southwest and beyond.
  • Major step in UK’s ambitious target to deliver 10 GW of hydrogen production by 2030 as we shape a lower carbon future.

Costain is delighted to announce that it is a founding member of a ground-breaking consortium which will create an infrastructure ecosystem to bring the benefits of hydrogen to the Southwest of England.

The Hydrogen Southwest partnership comprises a group of nine leading organisations covering aerospace, shipping, hi-tech engineering, and public utilities. This infrastructure ecosystem of key industries aims to decarbonise transport, commerce, and power, while driving sustainable growth, upskilling the region, and delivering new job opportunities.

Focusing on key sectors such as shipping, aviation, and housing as well as industry, the consortium comprises leading companies easyJet, Airbus and Hynamics (EDF); industrial heavyweights GKN Aerospace; consultants and engineers Costain and Wood; and regional leaders Bristol Port, Bristol Airport, and Wales and West Utilities.

The collaboration creates links between supply and demand centres in the region and enables cross-sector partnerships that will drive the development of hydrogen infrastructure and technology.

Hydrogen Southwest supports the government’s ambitious drive to generate 10 GW of low carbon hydrogen production capacity by 2030. It will also provide a means for further representation and collaboration in national initiatives, building on our wider decarbonisation work with the South Wales Industrial Cluster and with bp for the East Coast Cluster CCUS (Carbon Capture Utilisation Storage).

Several pilot projects are planned, including:

  • Hydrogen Hub at Bristol Port – a study is underway to explore configuring the port to accept hydrogen or ammonia by ship, power landside vehicles with hydrogen and establish a hydrogen production facility at the port. The project includes developing a local pipeline network and supporting Airbus’ hydrogen-powered aircraft of the future
  • Project Acorn – easyJet aims to begin flying hydrogen aircraft as soon as they are commercially viable. To prepare the ground, the company will continue with the research and development of hydrogen powered Ground Support Equipment at Bristol Airport

“The Southwest has a rich engineering and energy history and is home to a powerful cluster of leading aerospace, transport and logistics businesses,” said Simon Earles, Hydrogen Southwest chair. “This combination of industrial experience, delivery expertise and regional knowledge presents a formidable opportunity to accelerate the UK’s transition to alternative power at scale.”

Andy Clarke, Director of Integrated Transport at Costain:

“The Southwest is perfectly positioned to link greener energy, heat and power with key transportation modes including shipping lanes and flight paths, building on its rich history of developing innovative transport connections. These connections make it the obvious choice for creating an ecosystem for the roll out of hydrogen to the UK.

“At Costain, we see moving away from carbon-based fuels for transportation as critical to our efforts to enable healthier, happier, and better-connected communities. By leveraging innovative technologies and even more collaborative ways of working, we can enable seamless, cleaner, and more active journeys for customers.”

The partnership is working with Business West to create a skills development proposition that would bring upskilling and employment benefits to communities across the West of England. This has been formalised with the Hydrogen Southwest Skills Consortium.

By driving investment and innovation in decarbonising technology, the Southwest is poised to become a centre of excellence for hydrogen expertise. This innovative partnership will help improve people’s lives by creating connected, sustainable infrastructure to support many generations to come.

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