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  • NGN opens dedicated H21 Project Office in Leeds, supported by Leeds City Council to focus on gas network conversion to zero-carbon hydrogen
  • The office opens in the week Government announces £25M funding for innovative approaches to using hydrogen gas for heating

 [26 April 2017] Leeds: The North of England’s gas distributer, Northern Gas Networks (NGN), with support of Leeds City Council, has officially launched its H21 Project Office in Leeds which will help establish the city and wider region as the UK’s hydrogen centre of excellence.

The office will deliver innovation projects with a strategic focus of providing compelling evidence to support UK gas grid conversion from natural gas (methane) to zero-carbon Hydrogen.  If such a conversion were to take place it would be the single biggest contributor to supporting the UK Government’s ambitious 2050 climate change targets.

The office opening comes in the week following the Government’s announcement that it will be committing £25M of funding for an innovative programme considering using hydrogen gas for heating in homes across the UK.

Mark Horsley, CEO of Northern Gas Networks, said: “We are delighted with the Government’s announcement of a £25m programme which will provide significant amounts of the critical evidence required to allow a policy decision to convert the gas network to 100% Hydrogen. By opening our dedicated project office, we are taking a further step towards our hydrogen future and sending a signal to the Government and the rest of the industry that we are ready to work with them to deliver it.

The dedicated office will bring together international leading talent from across the energy sector, academia, government and business to further examine and, build the foundations to deliver, the gas network conversion strategy set out by NGN in its ground breaking H21 Leeds City Gate project (get the report or watch the film by visiting NGN website).

The H21 Citygate project looked into the feasibility of substituting natural gas with hydrogen in the gas distribution network. The project has shown that the gas network has the correct capacity for conversion, it can be converted incrementally with minimal disruption to customers and it would have a minimal impact on customer’s bills.

Initially the office will be leading on the following projects:

  • H21 Network Innovation Competition bid – A circa £15m UK gas industry collaborative bid to provide the compelling safety evidence for gas grid conversion to hydrogen.
  • H21 Strategic Modelling – Major Urban Centres, expanding the methodology adopted in the H21 Leeds City Gate projects to other major urban centres across the UK.
  • H21 – Alternative hydrogen production and network storage technologies, considering alternative production and network storage solutions for a hydrogen conversion.
  • H21 – Domestic and Commercial Metering, considering the impact on network meters for a hydrogen conversion.

Mark continued: “Meeting the UK’s 2050 climate change obligations is a big challenge. Big challenges need big ideas and de-carbonising the UK gas networks through conversion to 100% hydrogen would represent the most significant single contribution to UK decarbonisation.”

For more information about Northern Gas Networks H21 project and to watch the film visit www.northerngasnetworks.co.uk/futures