Westminster Energy, Environment & Transport Forum

Since lockdown, we have been organising our full programme of conferences online. We will continue online until further notice, to ensure we play our part in helping our employees and delegates to remain safe during this time. We are pleased that so many key stakeholders, policymakers and other interested parties - both old friends and new delegates - are taking up the opportunity to discuss public policy issues and network at our impartial seminars. New events are coming on to our conference programme all the time. So there are plenty of opportunities for you to join us if you haven’t already, from wherever you are. For booking-related queries, or information on speaking, please email us at info@forumsupport.co.uk or contact us using one of the following numbers: +44 (0)7951044809 / +44 (0)7503591880 / +44 (0)7538736244.
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Priorities for UK industry decarbonisation - policy frameworks, regional and sector-specific strategies, and costs, competitiveness and the R&D base

Morning, Thursday, 14th January 2021

***Full-scale policy conference taking place online***

This conference will assess the priorities for achieving net-zero emissions in the UK industrial and manufacturing sectors.

The discussion is bringing stakeholders together with key policy officials who are due to attend from BEIS; Defra; DIT; the HSE; The Scottish Government and the Welsh Government.

The discussion at a glance:

  • policy options - both sector-specific and across industry, as well as tailored regional and local strategies
  • managing technology and infrastructure costs - and tackling investment uncertainties and opportunities for sector collaboration
  • enhancing the research base - and the future of international research relationships
  • UK international competitiveness - and leadership in decarbonisation

A scan of relevant developments:

  • PM commits £350 million to fuel green recovery - aimed at cutting heavy industry emissions and supporting economic recovery from coronavirus, alongside the Government’s 2050 net-zero target
  • New plans to make UK world leader in green energy - £160m funding announced by the Government for offshore wind infrastructure and to support green job creation and supply chains
  • ISCF Decarbonisation of industrial clusters phase 2: deployment - latest Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund competition for £10-20m grants for projects delivering significant industrial CO2 emissions
  • Investing in foundation industries: help to back innovators - the government-backed Transforming Foundation Industries Challenge aimed at encouraging investment to support green innovation within sectors such as cement, glass, chemicals, and metals
  • Budget 2020 - with increased public R&D investment in science, innovation and technology, including for the design and delivery of net zero policies and programmes
  • IETF: finalising the design - summary of feedback and government response - latest on the design and operation of the Industrial Energy Transformation Fund, and where support should be targeted
  • Brexit - the government confirming that it will not offering funding for successful Research Fund for Coal and Steel applicants, with the EU also not offering finding to UK applicants for future
  • Clean Steel Fund - £250m from government to expand low-carbon steel and iron production, including primary energy usage and methods of manufacturing
  • Hydrogen Supply Competition Phase 2 - for demonstrator projects aimed at speeding development of low carbon bulk hydrogen
  • The Industrial Decarbonisation Research and Innovation Centre (IDRIC) - announced earlier this year, with the aim of developing skills, research, and innovation for stakeholders across industry
  • the Carbon Capture and Storage Infrastructure Fund - with £800m to support the creation of two operational CCS sites in the UK, one in the 2020s and another in the 2030s

Areas for discussion:

  • policy options - the future for public funding, carbon levy exemptions, and bi-lateral energy trading schemes for those generating heat and hydrogen energy
  • rolling out policy frameworks - looking at creation of sector-specific policy for areas such as steel, cement, paper and polymers that can be adapted and rolled out across industry
  • improving industry cooperation:
    • designing joined-up frameworks that bring together key sectors and players
    • opportunities for collaboration on technological innovation and implementing cost-effective inclusive strategies for reaching net-zero emissions
  • regional and local economic strategies - with government emphasising their role in economic, looking at:
    • regional industrial clusters - their role in contributing to economic growth and recovery
    • tailored strategies - designing pathways towards net zero that maximise the competitive advantage of local industrial assets
    • UK competitiveness - opportunities for across-sector working to establish leadership in new technologies
  • costs - the physical and economic challenges for industry in decarbonisation, and how barriers around technology cost and infrastructure can be overcome including:
  • technology investment - ways forward for reducing risk and capital costs, increasing collaboration, shortening payback periods, demonstrating project viability, and commercialisation
  • innovating factory connection to energy system infrastructure:
    • assessing policy development for carbon capture commercialisation, and preparing facilities for CCS and CCUS
    • realising revenue opportunities from hydrogen supply and export
  • smart-led decarbonisation - modernising facilities and innovating system processes for emissions monitoring, and preparing in-house equipment for emissions data reporting
  • research collaboration - next steps for:
    • growing partnerships between universities and industry, including smaller innovators
    • international research relationships and the future for international collaboration beyond the end of the UK transition period

The agenda:

  • Developing a net-zero pathway for the UK manufacturing sector - scaling up research and development, technology commercialisation, and reducing costs
  • Planning industrial decarbonisation for the long term - strategy development, attracting investment, and designing decarbonisation pathways tailored to regional industrial profiles
  • Net-zero for manufacturing and the future of the R&D base - multidisciplinary research, bringing technologies to market, and learning from strategic approaches in other countries
  • Next steps for overcoming physical and economic challenges for industrial low-carbon transitions
    • Developing low-carbon infrastructure for energy-intensive users - integrating carbon capture, increasing energy efficiency, and opportunities from connection to the power grid
    • Reducing costs in innovation for UK industrial competitiveness - payback times and investment in commercialisation, taxation policy, and developing global supply chain relationships
    • De-risking investment for manufacturing decarbonisation - strategies for collaboration on equipment and technology development, reducing capital costs, and policy support
    • Opportunities for the UK to lead on zero-carbon factory clusters - public and private cooperation, developing new technologies and markets, and the Industrial Clusters Mission 2040 target
  • Policy priorities for developing a net-zero pathway for industry and manufacturing

Policy officials attending:

Our forums are known for attracting strong interest from policymakers and stakeholders. Places have been reserved by officials from BEIS; Defra; Department for International Trade; Health and Safety Executive; The Scottish Government and the Welsh Government.

For this conference, we expect speakers and other delegates to be an informed group including Members of both Houses of Parliament, senior government officials involved in this area of public policy, together with manufacturing centres and organisations, industry stakeholders across steel, paper, glass, cement, and polymers, research councils and catapults, trade associations, energy generators, emitters, and heat and thermal groups, investment firms, legal and consultancy organisations, think tanks, environmental voices, and reporters from the national and trade media.

This is a full-scale conference taking place online***

  • full, four-hour programme including comfort breaks - you’ll also get a full recording to refer back to
  • information-rich discussion involving key policymakers and stakeholders
  • conference materials provided in advance, including speaker biographies
  • speakers presenting via webcam, accompanied by slides if they wish, using the Cisco WebEx professional online conference platform (easy for delegates - we’ll provide full details)
  • opportunities for live delegate questions and comments with all speakers
  • a recording of the addresses, all slides cleared by speakers, and further materials, is made available to all delegates afterwards as a permanent record of the proceedings
  • delegates are able to add their own written comments and articles following the conference, to be distributed to all attendees and more widely
  • networking too - there will be opportunities for delegates to e-meet and interact - we’ll tell you how!

Full information and guidance on how to take part will be sent to delegates before the conference

Keynote Speaker

Professor Mercedes Maroto-Valer

Industrial Decarbonisation Champion, Industrial Decarbonisation Research and Innovation Centre and Director, Research Centre for Carbon Solutions, Heriot-Watt University


Dr Danial Sturge

Energy Policy Advisor, Energy Systems Catapult

Dr Aaron Goater

Industry Lead, Committee on Climate Change

Richard Bass

Director, Energy, Sustainability and Infrastructure, Navigant

Senior speaker confirmed from Burges Salmon

Dr Paula Carey

Managing Director, Carbon8 Systems

Richard Kendall

Executive Director, Strategic Policy and Business Development, Humber LEP

Rosa Wilkinson

Communications Director, High Value Manufacturing Catapult

Chris McDonald

Chief Executive Officer, Materials Processing Institute