Lincolnshire County Council: Theddlethorpe’s three projects

Two further major proposals are on the table for a site which is the subject of a nuclear waste storage facility consultation, it has been revealed.

Councillors in Lincolnshire County Council’s Environment and Economy Committee called for those behind a geological disposal facility (GDF) to work with plans for a blue hydrogen facility and a carbon storage and transfer facility within Theddlethorpe.

A number of local residents are already up in arms over the proposed GDF, developed by Nuclear Waste Services (formerly Radioactive Waste Management) saying it will be harmful to the local area’s reputation, and impact on visitors and the character of the area.

All three projects were looking at using the Theddlethorpe Gas Terminal.

The DelpHYnus project submitted to the UK’s Oil and Gas Authority by Neptune Energy would see a combined carbon capture and blue hydrogen generation facility and would be linked to facilities in the South Humber Industrial area, a new off-shore facility in the North Sea, and the Hatton Compressor Station.

Bosses hope to create a 1.8GW hydrogen production plant which they say would meet 36% of the UK’s target capacity by 2030.

Meanwhile, the V Net Zero project from Harbour Energy would look to use an area in the southern North Sea – known as the Rotliegend gas field, Viking and Victor – connected to Immingham and the Theddlethorpe Gas Terminal to store 11 million tonnes of CO2 by 2030.

Harbour said the facility will reuse and build on its own legacy infrastructure to be cost effective, will be secure and will be scalable.

They said the project will enable the decarbonisation of more than 50% of the area’s industrial emissions.

Councillors were told all three projects had been contacted by LCC to get further understanding of the plans and to ask them to speak to one another.

Justin Brown, assistant director for growth at Lincolnshire County Council, said: “We do not know we’re not technical experts whether they could coexist.

“What we think is very important is that the site is used to help to generate investment, jobs, environmental protection from the sea.”

Councillors were keen to point out there was still a lack of information, with chairman Councillor Ray Wootten acknowledging there was a “fear of the unknown”.

Following the meeting campaigners from the Guardians of the East Coast (GOTEC) said they were “disappointed and alarmed” by some of the messages from the meeting.

They were highly critical of all three projects, fearing that a lack of green credentials and marginal impacts could cause more harm than good. They also had concerns about potential leaks on the sites.

They called on LCC to look further into mitigation and adaptation measures to tackle the climate crisis.

“If LCC are hell bent on keeping the TGT as an industrial site we would much prefer a solar farm which could be at ground level or roof mounted allowing a suitable development below,” they said.

“Various suggestions have emerged including a visitor centre or a centre of excellence for farming.

“We aren’t even going to comment on the idea that the three options could co exist,” they added.

Others also hit out at some of the questions asked, with one councillor seemingly unaware of alternative sites being explored by NWS.

The group were also concerned about a description of the group as “hostile” during the meeting, saying it was “misleading and rude”.

“We are extremely concerned about the effect of a GDF on our beautiful county,” they said.

The GDF is currently before a working group which includes LCC, East Lindsey District Council and Theddlethorpe Parish Council.

If it moves ahead it will form a Community Partnership which could begin doling out some cash to community projects in the future.

NWS recently announced its search areas for the Geological Disposal Facility with Mablethorpe, as well as the Withern & Theddlethorpe ward included.

For more information on RWM and the Working Group click here and for more from GOTEC click here.

Daniel Jaines , Local Democracy Reporting Service