With more than two hundred world leaders and thousands of delegates attending the recent COP26 summit in Glasgow, attention is now firmly focused on decarbonisation and the role we can all play to reduce emissions.
It was agreed at the conference that countries will commit themselves to accelerating decarbonisation plans in order to combat climate change. Important decisions and pledges were also made with regards to deforestation and tackling global methane emissions.
A co-ordinated approach amongst government, industry experts and most importantly consumers is needed to ensure a fair and just transition, which has inclusiveness at the forefront of strategy development.
Achieving objectives set at COP26 will involve a wide range of solutions for both on and off grid homes and businesses, it is unlikely there will be one solution for all.
Northern Ireland’s natural gas users have collectively prevented a cumulative total of over 11 million tonnes of CO2 from entering the atmosphere since the first connection in 1996.
David Butler, Director at SGN Natural Gas outlined the importance of their network in Northern Ireland’s plans to decarbonise “The development of the SGN Natural Gas network ensures that consumers in the west of Northern Ireland now have access to a fuel source which realises an immediate carbon saving when compared with older oil systems or coal, whilst further development of the natural gas infrastructure evolves at pace.
“Importantly, we are working with our industry partners on the integration of biomethane to our network which is expected in 2022. This is a huge milestone which highlights the key role natural gas infrastructure will play, particularly in Northern Ireland where biomethane is much higher than other parts of the world. Similarly, hydrogen presents huge potential for Northern Ireland. We are pleased that SGN, our parent company in Scotland is leading the way with their H100 project, in what is a world first trial of hydrogen for domestic purposes, which could potentially revolutionise the entire utilities industry.
Mr Butler concluded “Leveraging these considerations and becoming a world leader in new energy is a very real opportunity for the region and one that excites us as an innovative utility infrastructure company. We look forward to playing our role in this critical process.”