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Redcar Hydrogen Community Project Offer: Free Appliances, Energy Efficiency Improvements and Feedback Payments to Participants

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An update from our Chief Executive Officer

Dear Redcar Residents,

As our Redcar Hydrogen Community project progresses, I wanted to address a number of points of misinformation that continue to circulate – including at a recent meeting that was not organised as part of the project – and set out our next steps.

I am aware of rumours circulating that NGN are not available to answer questions from local residents on the project. This is not the case. We are in regular touch with residents through the Hydrogen Hub on the High Street in Redcar, alongside day-time door-knocking, community events and a previous public meeting during the consultation phase.

We are waiting for our project proposal to receive sign off from the Government. This means we are missing key points of information that residents understandably wish to know.

I understand that our project brings questions and concerns to some, and people may want to ask those questions in a different format from the hub or over the phone, even if we cannot yet always give exact answers.

As a result, we have agreed with the council to host a meeting for residents and landlords within the proposed area in December. We are working through how this will work and will confirm a date soon.

In the meantime, I wanted to address some of the more concerning misinformation that is circulating.

Firstly – nothing will ever be installed in people’s homes that is dangerous. The project will not go ahead without the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) being satisfied.

There is absolutely no scenario in which we would ever install a product in anyone’s home or community that compromised their safety. You already trust us to safely deliver natural gas to your homes and businesses day in, day out and we will never compromise our safety record. To claim otherwise is false, and I’ve been disappointed to see unevidenced rumours circulating.

Secondly – the project allows participants to choose between a hydrogen boiler or an electric alternative, including a heat pump. There has again been some misinformation circulating that heat pumps are not an option as part of this project.

Third – neither a switch to hydrogen or electric will leave you out of pocket. Our promise to you is that no one involved in the project will pay more for their bill during the conversion than what they would have paid if they had continued to use natural gas. Any suggestion otherwise is entirely untrue.

I would urge anyone who has concerns or doubts to visit the Hydrogen Hub or to call us.

As a responsible gas network, the safety of our customers is our number one priority and we have decades of experience safely and reliably delivering gas to people’s homes, which we hope to continue to demonstrate with a new type of gas – hydrogen.

We will be in touch with local residents with a meeting date soon.

Mark Horsley

CEO, Northern Gas Networks