The largest distributor of natural gas in the UK has launched a 10-point decarbonisation plan that places a strong emphasis on hydrogen as a low-carbon solution to heating homes and businesses.
Cadent, which distributes gas to 11 million (roughly 38%) of homes in the UK, has made 10 commitments that it said will help decarbonise the way we use energy in our buildings.
The plan places a strong focus on the use of hydrogen, with the firm pledging to deliver the UK’s first 100% hydrogen pipeline by 2027.
Hydrogen has been proposed as a potential solution as the UK transitions towards net zero. Unlike natural gas, hydrogen does not produce carbon dioxide when burned.
Last year, prime minister Boris Johnson launched a 10-point plan to tackle climate change, which included driving the growth of low-carbon hydrogen as point two.
One of the benefits of using hydrogen as a low-carbon solution to heat homes is that it is believed that the UK could continue to use much of the existing gas infrastructure that is already in place, with existing boilers being replaced with hydrogen equivalents.
However, doubts have been raised over whether we will be able to heat our homes entirely using hydrogen and it is expected that electric-powered heat pumps will still need to play a major role in heating our homes.
As part of its strategy, Cadent also said it will deliver the first scaled hydrogen blending facility from 2025, which will allow for the blending of hydrogen and natural gas.
It will also enable 5GW of hydrogen production in its region by 2030.
Other commitments include launching a hydrogen skills academy and developing a hydrogen education programme by 2024.
Cadent will also install “hydrogen-ready appliances by 2026 or sooner” and will publish plans to demonstrate heat decarbonisation of whole communities by 2025.
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