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Major new infrastructure project expected to bring £1.3bn and 4000 jobs to UK economy

October 16th, 2012 | 2:36 pm

Investing in carbon capture and storage (CCS) in Yorkshire and Humber will provide a major boost to the UK economy, delivering £1.3bn and 4,000 skilled-jobs, a new report launched today has revealed.

The report comes just days before the government is due to announce the winners of billion pounds worth of funding and finance measures (under the electricity market reform) for a national Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) Commercialisation programme, which will be co-funded by the European Union. Two major projects in Yorkshire and Humber have been shortlisted for the funding.

Download the report's executive summary

The report states that Yorkshire and Humber is the best strategic location in Europe to build a CCS cluster and that putting this funding into the region will increase the area’s economic output by 0.8% per year, attract as much as £11billion in foreign investment and a further 11,000 jobs.

With plans already set for Siemens and David Brown to locate large factories in to Yorkshire and Humber, CCS would further contribute to making the region an internationally recognised hub for innovation and leading low carbon technology. The investment will also help the traditional industries in the area, such as power, steel, chemicals and cement which have been in decline since the 1960’s - to adapt and secure thousands of jobs for the future.

The report was commissioned by CO2Sense on behalf of the Yorkshire and Humber CCS Cluster Steering group, comprised of National Grid, 2Co Energy, Drax, General Electric, Amec and Tata Steel.

Barry Dodd, Chairman of CO2Sense, said:

 “This report gives conclusive evidence for the business case for investing in CCS in Yorkshire and Humber. The opportunities for the supply chain – valued at up to £251million – are enormous, as are the potential for inward investment in the area. We want to see the government back these plans, which will bring so many opportunities for the UKs businesses."

As well as the economic argument for investing in CCS for Yorkshire and Humber, it also has the potential to cut the UK’s carbon emission by up to 19%. It will transform one of the UK's highest emitting regions into one of the cleanest and most successful, by creating a low-carbon development zone, capturing economies of scale and a self-sustaining investment from CO2 intensive industry looking for competitive advantage.

The paper also has cross party support, led by Julian Smith, MP for Skipton and Ripon, who says:

“This report shows us exactly why investing in the Yorkshire and Humber CCS is the right move for the government. The region has the right concentration of heavy emitters that are working together to back this infrastructure, alongside ideal storage sites in the North Sea.”

“We have the chance to make Yorkshire and Humber an internationally renowned hub for low carbon technology and expertise – providing opportunities and jobs for generations to come.

“Yorkshire and Humber offers the best return on the government’s investment for the whole of the UK, whilst also providing jobs and growth for areas of Yorkshire and Humber in need of economic regeneration. It’s a win-win situation.”

The report has also received support from a number of high-profile organisations including the IPPR North, CBI, TUC and Committee on Climate Change.

Welcoming the report, Ed Cox, director at IPPR North, says:

“Investing in CCS in Yorkshire and Humber is a vital way to unlock the potential of the northern economy. The project will act as a catalyst for growth, delivering highly-skilled jobs and far-reaching economic opportunities.

“Yorkshire and Humber is fast-emerging as a global leader in the low-carbon technologies and this report further highlights the region’s capabilities within this sector and bringing benefits to the UK economy as a whole. Investment in this kind of infrastructure can genuinely rebalance the UK economy and enable the north of England to take its place alongside more progressive, productive and resilient Northern European regions.”

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