Budweiser bags planning permission for British green hydrogen project

The business first announced detailed plans for the project this time last year. Its intention is to meet all of the site’s demand for thermal energy and hydrogen fuel cell transport refuelling with hydrogen from a facility just off the A59 between Preston and Blackburn.

This facility would produce ‘green’ hydrogen only – a term used to describe hydrogen manufactured by electrolysing water to split its hydrogen and oxygen components, in processes powered by 100% renewable electricity.

Hydrogen produced at the site will be fed directly into the Brewery’s boilers. It will also be used to refuel vehicles on site.

It is hoped that the project could be up and running in less than 24 months. Grid connections have already been secured and the front-end engineering design (FEED) studies for the site are complete.

Budweiser Brewing Group UK & I is working with specialist hydrogen infrastructure developer Protium on the project, which the two firms estimate could mitigate 11,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions from the Samlesbury Brewery.

Protium said in a statement that the project will enable the brewer “to remain competitive” as fossil energy prices increase and as the sector seeks to decarbonise.

Protium and AB InBev, Budweiser Brewing Group UK&I’s parent company, are hoping to secure financial backing for the project from the UK Government, through the second Hydrogen Allocation Round.

Overseen by the Department for Energy Security and Net-Zero, the funding scheme provides revenue support to successful projects by bridging the gap between fossil fuel operating costs and fossil fuel operating costs. There was an initial focus on green hydrogen projects that could begin construction by 2025.

The UK Government is aiming for the nation to host 10GW of low-carbon hydrogen production capacity by 2030, at least half of which should be accounted for by green hydrogen. For other kinds of hydrogen, the Government has introduced a low-carbon standard in a bid to stop greenwashing and ensure that higher-carbon projects do not benefit from subsidies.

Budweiser Brewing Group UK&I and Protium are also planning to generate green hydrogen at the brewery in Magor, south Wales. Electrolysers at this location would be served by existing onsite wind and solar generation assets.

Comments (2)

  1. Rob Heap says:

    This is great news. We need 100’s of projects like this ASAP to help us reach net zero. Well done everyone involved in this!

  2. Paul Warwick says:

    Why don’t Budweiser and the local council look to add a waste plastic to hydrogen plant on site as well for additional local distrusted hydrogen made from local waste plastic from business and local residents.

    Kill two birds with one stone. It’s great to see someone producing local hydrogen but it would be far better to make it from local waste that would either be landfilled or incinerated.

    The new high temperature gasification with no emissions would be an excellent addition to this project I can put you in touch with the companies can achieve these aims.

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