Leading UK hydrogen trade association, Hydrogen UK, today has launched an industry-led supply chain strategy. This puts forward the industry vision for the future and outlines what is required to grow a robust hydrogen supply chain across the UK. The strategy is the culmination of extensive industry collaboration and insight, aimed at bolstering the growth of the hydrogen sector.
At present, there is widespread consensus that hydrogen is critical to achieving UK Net Zero targets. Despite being world leaders in low-carbon technologies, early opportunities for regional supply chain growth and job creation have not yet been fully realised.
With the industry at a tipping point, Hydrogen UK analysis indicates that the UK is poised to create 20,000 jobs, contributing £26bn in cumulative GVA. This opportunity can be realised across multiple aspects of hydrogen supply chains – be it production, storage, or network development and off-taker markets. With large scale projects scheduled to take final investment decisions in the coming 12 months, we must act now to maximise the economic benefit of these projects and support UK supply chains.
To seize the hydrogen economic opportunity, industry is calling for an ambitious coalition between government, industry, private finance, and academia, to kick-start large projects and build a strong UK supply chain. Notably, to realise the industry ambition of 50% local content, whereby at least half of the value created the hydrogen industry is retained within the UK, Hydrogen UK has put forward five strategic pillars. These include:
- targeted, end-to-end funding support, scaling up UK capabilities in both emerging technologies and advanced manufacturing
- incentivising partnerships that stimulate industry, government and private finance investments into large production, networks, storage, infrastructure and off-taker projects
- accelerate targeted public sector finance into UK supply chains
- a more strategic approach between government and industry to attract overseas supply chain companies
- stimulate the domestic hydrogen market and supply chain by balancing the role of non-price factors and competitive allocations, building on knowledge from the wind sector
Fundamentally, to ensure this is achieved, the UK requires harmonised standards, regulations and accelerated testing of hydrogen technologies, a monitoring and evaluation framework to track supply chain growth, as well as accelerating the development of a trained workforce to deliver the necessary projects and wider supply chain.
With this in mind, Hydrogen UK will work closely with DESNZ to capitalise on this opportunity, deliver on the strategic pillars and maximise the impact of the Government’s new £960m Green Industries Growth Accelerator.
On the report, Clare Jackson, CEO of Hydrogen UK said: “We’re at a critical juncture in the evolution of the UK’s hydrogen supply chain development. Navigated correctly, we have the unparalleled opportunity to not only reap significant economic benefits, but also achieve our Net Zero objectives, and bolster domestic energy security.
“We must, however, recognise that hydrogen is still a relatively nascent industry, and as such necessitates a high degree of collaboration between government and industry in order to accelerate its growth and adaptation. Together, we have a collective responsibility to channel investment into burgeoning supply chains, thereby cementing the UK’s stature as a global frontrunner in hydrogen production and its diverse end-use applications. In striving for this, we look forward to our continued partnership with government to ensure the report’s findings can help maximise the impact of GIGA.”
Jane Toogood the Chair of the Hydrogen Delivery Council said: “The UK has a unique set of capabilities and skills that are critical enablers for meeting our future Net Zero target. The opportunity for the hydrogen economy to deliver 20,000 new jobs and generate £26bn in cumulative GVA by 2030 represents a highly attractive prize for both industry and government.
“I’m delighted to see that Hydrogen UK has shaped work within the Hydrogen Delivery Council Supply Chain and Skills Group to define an industry-led strategy that will accelerate the development of a vibrant, local supply chain. The evidence gathered as part of this analysis will be integral to ensure the welcomed Green Industries Growth Accelerator and other government interventions deliver the greatest impact. I look forward to this strategy evolving into a shared action plan which will support future job creation and economic growth across the UK hydrogen supply chain.”