Part of the HyNet North West initiative, the hydrogen plants would be located at the downstream energy company’s Stanlow Manufacturing Complex in Ellesmere Port.
If approved by Cheshire West and Chester Council, construction could begin on the £750m plants by the end of 2022. That would set up hydrogen production to begin by the mid-2020s.
Essar Oil’s application asks for full planning permission for the first process plant and outline planning permission for a second one. The first plant would be able to produce 350MWth of low-carbon hydrogen, while the second would double that number.
“Essar is committed to delivering on its transition to low carbon operations,” said Deepak Maheshwari, chief executive officer for Essar. “The planned evolution of our Stanlow Refinery is set to power the UK’s low carbon revolution for years to come, creating jobs and helping local communities flourish.”
The hydrogen production hubs would take up 2.8m sq ft. The development team for the project includes Essar Oil as owner and operator, Progressive Energy as the lead partner and facilitator, Kent as the engineering contractor and Johnson Matthey as technology licensor. A prominent part in the Hynet strategy, the plants will play a key role in reducing carbon emissions in the North West by 10m tonnes by 2030.