London — Eni UK and Uniper have announced today the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to jointly evaluate decarbonisation initiatives in North Wales. The collaboration, in line with the UK government’s ten-point plan for the green industrial revolution, will investigate the technical and commercial feasibility to work together on future low carbon project initiatives in the region.
Eni UK currently owns and operates the oil and gas fields in Liverpool Bay, feeding gas extracted from the fields into the Uniper owned Connah’s Quay power station in Flintshire. The MOU will support Uniper’s investigations into future opportunities for blue and green hydrogen production at Uniper’s site, capturing any CO2 produced as a by-product from the process. While Eni UK will use its infrastructure to transport and store the CO2 in Liverpool Bay.
Uniper’s Connah’s Quay facility is ideally located for low carbon hydrogen production as it has a source of gas from the national transmission system and is in close proximity to the existing Eni UK pipeline infrastructure, which is being repurposed to transport CO2 as part of the move of Eni UK into Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) as part of the wider HyNet North West project.
Phillip Hemmens, Eni’s Head of North Europe Region Management said: “This is an exciting time to invest in decarbonisation technologies to make the UK a global leader in the green industrial revolution. We hope this commitment for future cooperation between Eni UK and Uniper will further complement our ongoing work with the wider HyNet North West project, placing the North West of England and North Wales at the forefront of the UK’s journey to Net Zero and helping to decarbonise many sectors of the economy from 2025 onwards.”
Mike Lockett, Uniper UK Country Chairman and Group Chief Commercial Officer Power, commented: “Uniper’s Connah’s Quay power station is ideally placed to be part of the decarbonisation story for North Wales and the North West of England, as we look to grow our hydrogen capability in the UK. We look forward to working together with Eni UK to explore future hydrogen production and CCS opportunities at the site.”
The MOU marks the latest in a number of agreements between Eni UK and companies based in the North West of England and North Wales as the company develops its CCS business. The agreements form part of company’s business strategy to lead the energy transition and play a significant role in the UK’s target for Net Zero emissions by 2050.
In May, a framework agreement with Progressive Energy Limited was signed to accelerate carbon capture and storage (CCS) within the HyNet North West low carbon cluster project. Eni UK holds a CO2 storage appraisal licence, through which it plans to use its offshore fields in Liverpool Bay as a permanent storage site for CO2. Earlier this year, Eni UK established a new company ‘Liverpool Bay CCS Limited’, a wholly-owned affiliate of Eni UK, to be the entity for future licenced operations under the Government’s envisaged regulated regime for CO2 transport and storage.
Uniper is a pioneer in the field of hydrogen and has the technical expertise and experience to play a growing role in helping the UK reach its target of achieving Net Zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. Uniper will contribute by investing in carefully selected projects and sharing its deep expertise in the development of hydrogen production and use, as well as helping to upskill the UK’s workforce, through its Engineering Academy. In 2020, Uniper pledged to make its own European power generation portfolio climate-neutral by 2035. With hydrogen technology as a cornerstone of its strategy, Connah’s Quay power station is well placed to play its part in Uniper’s and the UK’s future hydrogen story. The MOU with Eni UK is part of Uniper’s hydrogen growth strategy in the UK and forms one of a number of partnerships it has in place across the country.