UK’s Business and Energy Secretary, Kwasi Kwarteng has recently revealed that the government is planning to establish a low-carbon hydrogen economy over the next decade that could generate thousands of new jobs and see billions of pounds in investment as well as new export prospects.
The hydrogen strategy is part of Prime Minister Boris Johnson's ambitious 10 Point Plan for a green industrial revolution and lays the groundwork for collaboration between the government and the industry to achieve its goal of 5GW of low-carbon hydrogen production capacity by 2030.
If successful, by 2030, the hydrogen economy could be worth £900 million and generate over 9,000 high-quality jobs in the UK, potentially growing to 100,000 jobs and £13 billion by 2050.
Hydrogen would play a key role in decarbonizing energy-intensive, polluting industries such as chemicals, power, oil refineries, and heavy transportation such as shipping, trains, and HGV lorries by assisting them in moving away from fossil fuels.
According to Mr. Kwasi Kwarteng, “this marks as the beginning of the hydrogen revolution in the United Kingdom. The clean energy source has the potential to revolutionize people’s lives and will be critical in combating climate change and reaching Net-Zero”.
“With the potential to produce a third of the UK's energy in the future, the strategy places the UK as the first in the race to ramp up hydrogen technology globally and capture thousands of jobs and private investment that come with it”.
According to estimates, hydrogen could account for 20-35 percent of the UK's energy consumption by 2050, making the energy source critical to meeting the targets of net zero emissions by 2050 and a 78 percent reduction in emissions by 2035 – an opinion shared by the independent Climate Change Committee of UK.