Under the plan which details some of the most dramatic tax cuts for decades, the Exchequer has said that the government is “driving the development” of “home-grown” hydrogen, carbon capture, utilisation, and storage (CCUS), nuclear, and renewable technologies.
Additionally, the plan has said that the UK Government is set to increase the country’s renewable capacity by 15% by 2023, supporting its commitment to reach Net Zero emissions by 2050.
Speaking today in the House of Commons, Jacob Rees-Mogg, Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, said, “”I think hydrogen is ultimately the silver bullet. We create it from renewable sources, because we have the wind power when people are not drawing on the electricity system; we use it as an effective battery and it can then, with some adjustments, be piped through to people’s houses to heat them during the winter. There are real opportunities with hydrogen.”
By cancelling a planned corporation tax rise, keeping it at 19%, and cutting basic income tax to 19% in April 2023, Kwarteng hopes to tackle energy costs to bring down inflation.
The Chancellor confirmed that the Government is in discussion with 38 local authorities in England, including Tees Valley, South Yorkshire and West of England to set up Investment Zones in specific site areas.
More specifically the plan says it will fast-track a number of UK hydrogen projects in the proposed Investment Zones, such as: HyNet Hydrogen Pipeline, INOVYN Hydrogen Storage, East Coast Cluster Hydrogen Pipeline, Aldbrough Hydrogen Storage, and Hydrogen Electrolyser Capacity Development.
Commenting on the Growth Plan, Kwasi Kwarteng, Chancellor of the Exchequer, said, “This will not happen overnight but the tax cuts and reforms I’ve announced today – the biggest package in generations – send a clear signal that growth is our priority.”
He added, “We’re accelerating new road, rail and energy projects by removing restrictions that have slowed down progress for too long.”
The plan has received some industry support. Ruth Herbert, Chief Executive of the CCSA, said, “We are delighted that the new Chancellor has today in his new Growth Plan reaffirmed the UK’s commitment to CCUS and hydrogen by including the HyNet and East Coast CCUS clusters in the list of infrastructure projects to be accelerated, alongside hydrogen pipelines and storage that are essential for the effective operation of those clusters.
“This is a strong signal to industry that the government intends to accelerate its CCUS Cluster Sequencing Programme, and we look forward to seeing the detailed timeline set out and progression of the necessary enabling legislation.”