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Ballylumford power project calls for more collaboration to grow north's hydrogen economy

Pictured at the Ballylumford Power-to-X energy event are (from left) are Craig Nicol from Net Zero Technology Centre, B9’s David Surplus, Mark Jessop from Islandmagee Energy Ltd, head of hydrogen advanced technologies at the Department for Economy Edward Kerr, and Gerard McIlroy from Mutual Energy

THE team behind the Ballylumford 'Power-to-X' project which aims to create a full-cycle hydrogen economy using 100 per cent renewable energy sources says collaboration within the UK's renewable sector is crucial to growing the north's green economy.

The call came as a panel of industry experts met at at Magheramorne Estate to explore the progress of the pioneering project at an energy event hosted by the team behind the venture near Islandmagee.

The Power-to-X project (www.ballylumfordp2x.co.uk) aims to create a full-cycle hydrogen economy, from production and storage, through to distribution and usage at the site and beyond.

It is currently conducting a study to explore what it will take to create and implement Northern Ireland's first dedicated 100 per cent hydrogen gas network.

Project director David Surplus said: “We have a fantastic opportunity in Northern Ireland to be a leader in green hydrogen system development and deployment, fostering growth in a green economy.

“But it will depend on more collaboration between government, the transport and energy sectors to make it work. From an economic development point of view, the Power-to-X genre holds a unique role of cross-sectoral coupling that can only thrive by working together.

“It's great to have so many people here sharing a passion to create a cleaner world for future generations. There is capability here and across the UK for a green industrial revolution which doesn't just have a positive environmental impact, but an economic one too by creating commercial viability and jobs.”

The Ballylumford site has unique significance, combining connection to the Northern Ireland gas and electricity transmission networks alongside interconnection with Scotland through the Scotland-Northern Ireland Pipeline (SNIP) and Moyle electricity interconnector.

The project sees a collaboration between local firms B9 Energy, Islandmagee Energy Ltd and Mutual Energy together with Aberdeen based Net Zero Technology Centre.

David added: “Throughout this exciting project there has been a real sense of discovery and progress being made. It's showing how the concept of longer duration energy storage is key to developing a resilient and secure energy supply chain, whilst reducing carbon emissions.

“It will allow us to take full advantage of our home-grown renewable energy sources, drive down costs and help end our reliance on volatile and expensive fossil fuels.”

The Ballylumford Power-to-X project is funded by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).

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