The appeal of the Humber as a location for large-scale investment has been underlined by plans for a £180m-plus green hydrogen production plant.
Meld Energy, an international green hydrogen development company, backed by major US-based funders, has chosen Saltend Chemicals Park as the location of its first UK site.
The proposed hydrogen plant sits within the Humber Freeport footprint and is an example of the kinds of game-changing investments freeports were created to stimulate.
If built today, it would be the largest green hydrogen production plant in the UK. Meld Energy has said green hydrogen could be produced at the site early in 2027.
Simon Bird, Chair of Humber Freeport, said: “The recent announcement from Meld Energy highlights the strength of investment opportunities available in the Humber region.
“The region’s existing advantages are enhanced further by the many benefits to businesses offered by the Humber Freeport. It adds up to a tremendously powerful proposition to investors.
“We’re delighted Meld Energy has chosen the Humber as its investment destination of choice, adding to the world-leading cluster of renewables and low carbon energy businesses already in the region.”
Meld Energy’s initial proposed plant will offer 100MW of green hydrogen capacity. The company has laid out future plans which could scale up the total investment in the Humber to over £200m.
The news comes after Prime Minister Rishi Sunak visited the US to meet with President Joe Biden. During the visit, it was announced £14bn of investment would be made by American companies in the UK.
The proposed development also builds on other large-scale investments at Saltend Chemicals Park, including earth exploration and development company Pensana, which broke ground on a £150m rare earth processing facility in summer 2022.
Once completed, the Pensana facility will create around 125 highly-skilled jobs in the Humber region.