New government funding to support British industries, including construction, mining and quarrying has been announced with an aim to reduce their reliance on fossil fuels. Hydrogen Industry Leaders looks at what support there will be for the hydrogen economy.
The £32.5 million funding package has been announced to help industries transition from using red diesel, also known as gas oil.
It has been made available through the second phase of the Red Diesel Replacement Competition, which supports projects that seek to develop red diesel alternatives. The £32.5 million package will support three to five demonstration projects that participated in Phase 1 of the programme.
Industry Has A Crucial Role In Transitioning Away From Red Diesel
This next phase of funding is said to support industries to reduce their reliance on fossil fuels, while also helping to cut industry emissions and energy costs, supporting the UK’s commitment to transition away from red diesel to help meet our climate change and air quality targets.
Minister for Energy and Climate Change, Graham Stuart, explained the key role that these industries have in supporting the transition to low carbon alternatives: “These industrial sectors, and the jobs they create, are crucial to our economy, and they also have an important role to play in our shift towards a greener, more secure future.
“This latest round of funding will help to speed up industrial decarbonisation, providing industry and consumers with effective low carbon alternatives to red diesel while boosting green investment to future-proof the resilience of British industry.”
The Funding Will Help Boost Sustainable Technologies
The funding follows £6.7 million funding which was provided to 17 winners under Phase 1 of the competition, in areas covering electrification, e-fuels and green hydrogen, as well as technologies that capture and store energy which would ordinarily be wasted from a vehicle or a machine.
One of the previous winners from Phase 1 was MAHLE Powertrain Ltd based in Northampton. Working in partnership with the University of Nottingham and Clean Air Power, to coalition of organisations received £425,072 to build 2 prototype engines capable of running on ammonia and hydrogen, with the aim of providing a pathway for the sustainable use of heavy-duty engines.
Also, boosting hydrogen, CATAGEN Ltd in Belfast, received £787,000 for two projects, an e-fuel generator to develop e-diesel and a novel hydrogen compressor.
Alternative Power Sources Must Be Explored
Switching industry to lower carbon fuels, supported through schemes such as the Red Diesel Replacement competition, will be critical for reducing emissions to meet the UK’s net zero objectives.
Jonathan Hall, Head of Research & Advanced Engineering at MAHLE Powertrain, expressed that exploring alternative power sources is crucial to transitioning towards a sustainable future: “Exploring other power sources such as ammonia has considerable potential, and the funding provided by BEIS via the Red Diesel Replacement programme has enabled us to develop these innovative, zero carbon powertrain solutions.”
The announcement forms part of the £1 billion Net Zero Innovation Portfolio, which is in place to help accelerate the commercialisation of low carbon technologies, systems and business models in power, buildings, and industry.