A more comprehensive plan of action is required by the UK Government to ensure decarbonisation of heavy industry at the pace demanded by the UK’s current net zero target, according to two studies released by sustainable economy organisation Aldersgate Group.

With UK heavy industry contributing £170bn to the economy and employing nearly 3 million people across the country, the sector is vital to ensuring the UK meets its net zero goals.

The recently released ’Industrial Decarbonisation Strategy and Hydrogen Strategy’ outlined the Government’s plans to cut industrial emissions and accelerate decarbonisation, but studies conducted by Frontier Economics and University College London (UCL) have said that this isn’t enough and a more detailed policy framework must be provided for the UK to drive heavy industry low carbon investment.

Commenting on the studies and the necessity for the UK Government to meet growing demand for low carbon industry, Matthew Bell, Director and Joint Head of Public Policy, Frontier Economics, said, “The UK has an opportunity to develop competitive, low carbon industries to match growing global demand for low carbon industrial products.”

“Our report highlights the most important and urgent actions that the Government must take to help UK industry take the lead in winning new contracts, while also meeting our climate commitments.”

Recommendations given in Frontier Economics’ ‘Accelerating the decarbonisation of industrial clusters and dispersed sites’ publication include providing confidence to industry in the area of carbon capture, utilisation and storage (CCUS), low carbon hydrogen and biomass.

To achieve this, Frontier Economics have suggested the use of contracts for differences (CfDs) for alternative fuels and CCUS and government matchmaking to establish contacts between suppliers and industrial producers.

It was also recommended that the Government work with Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) and local authorities to ensure industrial sites such as cement plants have access to essential low carbon infrastructure.

The UCL report focused on electrification and how delivering low cost, low carbon electricity is essential to industrial decarbonisation in the UK.

With COP26 coming up, more companies are focusing on ensuring their products are suitable for the low carbon transition. Committed to supplying ’GREENSTEEL’ to the UK, Liberty Steel UK has proclaimed its commitment to the UK’s transition to becoming a low carbon economy.

“It is important that government takes steps to help drive this innovation from industry, in order to the accelerate the net zero transition,” said Edward Heath-Whyte, Head of Environment and Sustainability, Liberty Steel.

The full report from Aldersgate Group is available to download here.