18 May 2023

ENA’s new report discusses how a UK-wide hydrogen network can unlock economic growth, provide consumer choice and bolster energy security.

A hydrogen vision for the UK

The Energy Networks Association (ENA) has published a new report, discussing how the evolution of a UK-wide hydrogen network can unlock economic growth, provide consumer choice and bolster energy security.

Titled A hydrogen vision for the UK, the report has been prepared with contributions from Cadent, Mutual Energy, National Gas, Northern Gas Networks, SGN, and Wales & West Utilities, outlining how hydrogen could play a critical role in the decarbonisation of our energy system.

All contributing partners have made five key pledges:

  1. Play a lead role in delivering against the UK’s hydrogen ambitions
  2. Conduct further research and testing in an open and transparent manner
  3. Engage with consumers across our networks on delivering net zero
  4. Work collaboratively with all stakeholders across the sector using a ‘whole systems’ approach
  5. Invest in both developing a skilled workforce for the future and a UK supply chain

Three key reasons for hydrogen

Offering consumers choice around decarbonisation, while delivering significant economic value for communities across the UK, hydrogen needs to be part of the country’s net zero conversation for a number of important reasons.

Firstly – hydrogen meets consumer wants and needs

Whether industrial, commercial or residential, hydrogen provides a more cost-effective and less disruptive decarbonisation route than alternatives.

For instance, hydrogen makes the most of our existing infrastructure. It uses the UK-wide underground pipe network built and paid for by consumers over decades, and reduces the need for new, above ground infrastructure, which not only comes with a significant cost but also a great deal of disruption for local communities.

Secondly – hydrogen presents a key means of growing the UK’s economy

Hydrogen UK estimates investment in the wider hydrogen supply chain could generate £18 billion of economic value and 75,000 jobs. Embracing hydrogen will protect and create jobs in the gas industry and the wider economy, and boost export potential for UK hydrogen companies.

Finally – network transformations to drive environmental improvements

It transforms our network to deliver net zero energy, tackling climate change and improving air quality.

The report goes on to map out the potential for hydrogen by 2030, 2035, 2040, 2045 and 2050, making clear the next steps that need to be taken.

Read the report in full

As Lawrence Slade, Chief Executive of the ENA, notes in the report’s foreword: “Energy touches every part of our economy - and we are on the brink of a major transformation in how we both produce and use it.”

Victoria Mustard, Decarbonisation Strategy Lead at Xoserve, commented: “We welcome this new report from ENA and the other contributing partners, which makes a clear case for the benefits of transitioning to hydrogen in the UK’s decarbonisation journey.”

Click the button below to read ENA’s latest report in full.


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Video: A hydrogen vision for the UK

Watch ENA's video demonstrating how hydrogen will work as part of the UK’s decarbonisation journey.


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