Northern enterprise partnerships publish plan to go green and boost the economy

A new report by the NP11 group of Northern Local Enterprise Partnerships pinpoints projects to lead the UK’s bid to cut carbon emissions and boost the economy.

By Tim Gavell
Thursday, 14th April 2022, 3:45 pm

According to the NP11’s Net Zero North Prospectus, there are four key areas where the North has world-leading capabilities that could drive the UK’s Green Industrial Revolution: Offshore technologies; new nuclear; hydrogen and Carbon Capture, Utilisation and Storage; and making the most of the North’s outstanding natural assets.

It said the North already generates 50 per cent of England’s renewable energy and is reducing emissions 13 per cent faster than the UK as a whole.

However, the scale of its industrial and manufacturing base means that it is still responsible for a quarter of the UK’s annual carbon emissions.

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The Westinghouse Springfields site at Salwick could potentially produce the fuel for New Nuclear projects being promoted by the NP11 Group

Previous research by the NP11 highlighted the potential to create 100,000 new green jobs by 2050, grow the economy by £2.3bn a year and attract an additional £2bn a year of investment into the North’s energy economy.

Among the projects it suggests are further development of offshore wind capabilities in the North Sea and the Mersey Tidal Power project; new nuclear in Cumbria and Lancashire; and advanced manufacturing research and innovation in South Yorkshire; plus tree planting and restoration of bog land across the region.

Clare Hayward, one of two lead NP11 Board members for clean growth, said: “Rising energy costs are causing significant concern for people and businesses across the North so we must begin putting the welcome commitments the UK government made at COP 26 into action as a matter of urgency.

“The North is already leading the way in responding to the Government’s 10-point plan and this Prospectus sets out a compelling offer to the Government for how the North can help them achieve their ambitions – not just on making the transition to Net Zero by 2050, but on levelling up the North’s economy, creating thousands of new green jobs, and developing new export and investment opportunities that will boost the competitiveness of Global Britain.

“It offers a positive glimpse into the future of the North’s economy – one in which the energy assets that powered the original Industrial Revolution become the foundations for the Green Industrial Revolution, providing economic and environmental benefits across the North and nationally, as well as enhanced energy security.”