As the North East is poised to become the UK’s first low carbon heat cluster, Minister for Business, Energy and Corporate Responsibility Lord Callanan of Low Fell viewed projects leading the way in the nation’s drive to achieve Net Zero carbon emissions.
It is hoped it will be a commercially viable sustainable energy project which can be duplicated across the UK coalfields, which account for 25% of the UK population.
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Andrew Clark, Energy Lead at the North East Local Enterprise Partnership, said: “During today’s visit, we were able to showcase some of the globally-important energy projects which are taking place in our region, and demonstrate how the North East is on its way to becoming the UK’s first cluster of low carbon heat innovation.”
Lord Callanan met beneficiaries of the Government’s Heat Networks Investment Project (HNIP) which features two mine water heat networks to be awarded funding by Triple Point Heat Networks Investment Management in partnership with the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.
He said: “Heating our homes and workspaces without causing carbon emissions is going to be key to tackling climate change and heat networks are proving an effective solution as well as opening up huge potential for investors at home and abroad.
“These low-carbon technologies are allowing us to build back greener from the pandemic, and as the Heat Networks Industry Council’s Ministerial Champion, I’m excited to see the opportunities they are providing in the North East.
“As a native of this region, I’m well aware of how coal dug from under our feet powered the industrial revolution 200 years ago and it’s fitting that that legacy and heat taken from former mines is now helping drive forward a new Green Industrial Revolution.”
Councillor Mark Wilkes, Durham County Council’s Cabinet member for neighbourhoods and climate change, said it was “delighted” to be part of the drive through the Seaham project and said the technology could be replicated elsewhere in the county and the wider region.