UK energy infrastructure developer Carlton Power has partnered with renewables investor Schroders Greencoat to develop green hydrogen production projects.

The two firms have formed the Green Hydrogen Energy Company (GHECO), a green hydrogen production company backed with an initial £200m (€226m) commitment from Schroders Greencoat funds, with a plan to build a 500MW project portfolio in the UK by 2030.

GHECO’s initial projects are expected to be in Trafford in Greater Manchester, Barrow-in-Furness (Cumbria) and Langage, near Plymouth (Devon).

GHECO will build the three schemes and future projects within Carlton’s project pipeline.

As part of the newly created partnership, Carlton Power will manage the development, construction and operation of current and future green hydrogen projects, with Schroders Greencoat leading on the financing of the projects and leveraging its UK renewable energy expertise, the companies said.

The three initial schemes, all originated and developed by Carlton Power, were recently shortlisted by the UK Department for Energy Security & Net Zero (DESNZ) to receive financial support from the government’s Hydrogen Business Model/Net Zero Hydrogen Fund in the first Hydrogen Allocation Round. 

DESNZ intends for projects awarded contracts to kickstart the low carbon hydrogen economy across the UK, helping meet the national ambition of up to 1GW of electrolytic hydrogen production capacity in operation or construction by 2025.

Keith Clarke, founder and CEO of Carlton Power, said: “The decision by Schroders Greencoat, one of the foremost investors in renewable energy in the UK and Europe, underlines the strength and quality of Carlton’s projects and our team, as well as confidence in our local development strategy and our decision to work with blue-chip industry off-takers, such as Kimberly-Clark.”

James Samworth, partner and co-head of Schroders Greencoat’s energy transition team, said: “We are aiming for GHECO to become one the UK’s most ambitious hydrogen investment platforms. As one of the leading renewables investors in the UK, we have been long-time front-runners in the deployment, management, and optimisation of the country’s renewable infrastructure — it made perfect sense for us to partner with Carlton, one of the country’s leading developers.”

Hydrogen is a huge opportunity and will play a centrally important part in the energy transition, Samworth said, adding that the new partnership provides the perfect platform for ”us to enter the space, accelerate the development of green hydrogen projects here in the UK, and provide investors with access to this growing industry”.

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