UK launches net zero-emission cluster competition funding

Oct 31 2019

The Industrial Decarbonisation challenge will commit £170 million towards deploying technologies like carbon capture and hydrogen networks in industrial clusters, supporting the Industrial Clusters Mission to establish the world’s first net zero industrial cluster by 2040.

Some of the UK’s most economically active and industrially intensive areas are also some of the largest producers of carbon emissions, with around a quarter of all greenhouse gas emissions being produced by industry.

Two competitions aim to help the UK achieve net zero emissions by 2050 as part of the Industrial Decarbonisation challenge, part of the government’s Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund.

Competition 1 – deployment

UK businesses will have the opportunity to apply for a share of up to £1 million to develop plans for decarbonising an industrial cluster.

Successful applicants from phase 1 will then compete for phase 2, where up to £131 million will be awarded for projects that will deliver, or support delivery of, significant emissions reductions in a UK industrial cluster by 2030.

The project must:

  • have total eligible costs between £60,000 and £200,000
  • be led by a UK business
  • be collaborative
  • last between 3 and 4 months
  • aim to carry out the project work in the UK and exploit the results across other UK industrial clusters


Competition 2 - roadmaps

UK organisations can apply for a share of up to £1 million to prepare plans for their journey to achieving low carbon and net zero industrial clusters.

In phase 2 up to £8 million will be awarded for the development of industrial cluster decarbonisation roadmaps for major UK industrial clusters. These must set out how a cluster could be decarbonised to net-zero levels.

The project:

  • must have total eligible costs between £40,000 and £120,000
  • can be carried out by a single organisation or in collaboration – which we encourage
  • must demonstrate how it will collaborate within a cluster
  • can last between 3 and 4 months
  • can be led by a UK registered business of any size, a research organisation, public sector organisation, charity or academic institution
  • must carry out its project work in the UK
  • must intend to exploit the results in at least one UK industrial cluster


The competition is open for applications and closes on 4 December at midday. There is an online briefing for applicants on 7 November.

Industrial Decarbonisation challenge

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