Jul 2024

Exploring RWE's vision for decarbonisation: A visit to Pembroke Net Zero Centre


IGEM’s CEO was very pleased to join Michelle Hitches from the Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult for a visit to RWE’s Pembroke Net Zero Centre (PNZC), which was hosted by Louise McDonnell. It was an opportunity to learn about and discuss the activity that is happening in the Milford Haven port area with respect to hydrogen – a location that has trialled a hydrogen hybrid heating system in the Milford Haven Port Authority offices alongside such a significant power generation asset and hosted two Riversimple cars and a hydrogen refueller in the marina.

The visit to RWE’s CCGT Power Station and their Pembroke Net Zero Centre gave a fascinating insight to their plans for decarbonisation and the role they’ll play in the pathway to net zero for Wales and the UK. By decarbonising its current operations at the power station, while investing in new innovative technologies, RWE are seeking to establish Pembroke at the forefront of South Wales’ low-carbon future.

Currently, RWE has ambitions to develop a number of new technologies at its Pembroke site.

  • RWE Pembroke Green Hydrogen – enabling the production of green hydrogen to decarbonise local industry.
  • RWE Pembroke Battery Storage – to flexibly store energy to help balance electricity supply and demand when it is needed most.
  • RWE Pembroke Power Station Decarbonisation – implementing Carbon Capture and Storage to decarbonise existing operations.
  • RWE Pembroke Floating Offshore Wind – providing a renewable energy supply from the Celtic Sea to help meet power demand.
  • Multi-Utility Service Transit (MUST) – a collaboration with Dragon LNG that connects industry across the Milford Haven Waterway.
  • Synchronous Condenser – complementing other technologies at the site and supporting electricity grid stability during periods of fossil-free power.

In addition, partners in the Milford Haven Waterway Energy Cluster, which includes RWE, are aiming to deliver 20% of the UK Government’s low carbon hydrogen production target by 2030. Wales & West Utilities’ ‘HyLine’ project offers a key enabler of distributing that hydrogen from this part of Pembrokeshire to customers across the South Wales Industrial Cluster, whilst National Gas are making plans for a hydrogen transmission system through Project Union which will connect hydrogen from Pembrokeshire with a GB and European-wide network.

Oliver said, “It’s incredible to see what collective action is lined up in the Milford Haven Waterway, with so much opportunity for hydrogen and renewable electricity to supply power generation, industry, buildings and transport – and the area really does have an advantage in boasting electricity and gas transmission and distribution network infrastructure that converges at the estuary, alongside such as significant power generation asset, oil refining and two out of three of the UK’s LNG terminals. IGEM is supporting the power generation sector, and wider gas, hydrogen and energy industry, in supporting the transition – but without forgetting our industry’s day job of safely running a natural gas system today that will still be needed for a long time to come as we work towards achieving our goal of engineering and operating a sustainable gas system for tomorrow.”

Louise added, “RWE’s Pembroke Net Zero Centre (PNZC), is a major multi-technology decarbonisation initiative in South Wales, which supports the broader decarbonisation of the region’s industry as part of the South Wales Industrial Cluster. Using RWE’s decades of experience and expertise in power production, the PNZC will bring together three key pillars of energy infrastructure - the decarbonisation of the gas-fired Pembroke Power Station: the production of green hydrogen on site, and the development of floating offshore wind in the Celtic Sea.”