Roadmap for decarbonising the Humber takes step forward with new appointment

26th Mar

Jonathan Oxley has been appointed by the Humber Local Enterprise Partnership as manager of the Humber Industrial Cluster Plan – a comprehensive roadmap for decarbonising industry in the region.

Tha plan aims to show how the Humber cluster can achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2040, potentially making it the first in the world to do so.

The Humber Cluster Industrial Plan is led by the Humber LEP and CATCH and is being delivered in conjunction with eight private sector partner organisations – British Steel, Centrica, Drax, Equinor, National Grid Ventures, Phillips 66, SSE Thermal and VPI Immingham. It is funded by InnovateUK as part of the Government’s Industrial Decarbonisation Challenge Fund scheme, part of the £350 million green recovery package.

The project, totalling £2.6 million, will move the Humber closer to achieving large-scale decarbonisation, with businesses across the Humber working together to find effective and lasting solutions for the region.

Jonathan is a chemist by training, having worked for BP for more than 20 years – including a secondment to the Energy Technologies Institute – leading national and international projects, followed by a period working with the World Energy Council.

Speaking on his appointment, Jonathan said the project was a “lighthouse” project that would not only show how the Humber and the UK can successfully decarbonise industry, but also highlight how this could be achieved globally.

Jonathan said: “With global attention on the potential for the Humber industry to decarbonise, now more than ever we have the incentive to work together on this ambitious programme to deliver for the businesses and people of the Humber area, to shine a light on what can be done at a national and international level – and to play our part in tackling climate change.

“We all recognise the huge potential there is for industrial decarbonisation here in the Humber and there are lots of organisations working on their own strategies, but the Humber Cluster Plan brings all of this ambition together in one place – to show how the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

“This is not just the opportunity to meet our net-zero ambitions and help fight climate change, but by creating a carbon neutral cluster we can also support inward investment opportunities for the Humber too – demonstrating that new businesses that choose to locate here can more readily align their operations with the UK’s net-zero ambition.”

While Jonathan has been the first appointed role at the Humber Cluster Plan, a further three roles will follow to complete the joint LEP-CATCH project team.

The plan’s joint project directors have welcomed the appointment.

Richard Kendall, executive director of strategic policy and business development at the Humber LEP, said: “We’re very pleased to welcome Jonathan to the team as manager of this major project. Jonathan’s experience and expertise across the energy sector will be invaluable as the team work with partners across the region on the plan to make the Humber a net-zero industrial cluster by 2040.”

David Talbot, CEO of CATCH, said: “There is a huge appetite for change in the Humber and a great deal of collaboration already taking place. We are thrilled to see Jonathan appointed as the Humber Industrial Cluster Plan manager – his experience leading internationally renowned energy projects will support the development of our own roadmap and the team and I look forward to working with Jonathan to propel the regions decarbonisation agenda.”

The Hull and East Yorkshire LEP will take over from the Humber LEP as lead partner on the project from April 1, supporting cross-Humber collaboration through the Humber Leadership Board.

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