ExxonMobil set to play key emissions reduction role in Solent Cluster
The Solent Cluster is a cross-sector collaboration of around 30 organisations, including international manufacturers and engineering companies, regional authorities, businesses and industries, leading logistics and infrastructure operators, and academic institutions, with decades of proven expertise in carbon capture and storage and hydrogen technology.
Key to the Solent Cluster vision is the potential development of new low carbon hydrogen production and Carbon Capture and Storage, located at and near the Fawley site.
These major investments could see us capture, process and store carbon emissions – from both our own operations and those of others - and could enable future potential investment in low carbon fuels for marine, aviation, road transport and other sectors. It also offers the potential of low carbon hydrogen to provide power and heat across the region.
We see the cluster as an enabler to open new potential markets, allow us to work with other industries and partners and utilise emerging technologies, such as Green Hydrogen, to deliver growth to the area.
The formation of The Solent Cluster is essential as it enables applications for Government investment support via the Cluster Sequencing Process. It is anticipated that clusters and projects will be invited to apply for the next phase of support as early as Q1 2023.
“This is an important opportunity to decarbonise the Solent Region, and we are proud to be a part of this collaborative effort to significantly reduce CO2 emissions from multiple sectors”, says Dan Ammann, president of ExxonMobil Low Carbon Solutions. “We look forward to working with our founding members and others to develop a compelling project.”
Anne-Marie Mountifield, chief executive of Solent Local Enterprise Partnership said, “Decarbonisation is at the heart of our economic strategy for the area and the creation of The Solent Cluster will sit alongside our ambition to pioneer approaches to climate change adaptation and decarbonisation, linked to our coastal setting, and establishing real expertise which other regions - nationally and globally - can learn from. The Solent Cluster will provide a platform for the excellent work that is already taking place and the partnership has a unique opportunity to affect real change in energy production and consumption, establishing the Solent and wider region as a leading centre for low carbon investment now and in the future.”
Dr. Lindsay-Marie Armstrong, associate professor of mechanical engineering and academic cluster lead for the Solent Industrial Decarbonization Cluster at University of Southampton, says, “The Solent is recognised as one of the leading contributors of CO2 emissions with approximately 3.2 million metric tons of CO2 emissions released from energy-intensive manufacturing processes every year. To form a decarbonisation cluster that spans the public, private and higher education sectors is a monumental step forward for the region.
“It will introduce sustainable fuels for local transportation, the aviation and the shipping sectors; create low carbon energy to heat homes, businesses and public buildings; and open up new highly skilled jobs opportunities. This can only be achieved by working together as a community, covering all sectors and ultimately working with the same desire to achieve a low carbon economic future for the Solent region.”