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Simon Fell MP visits Barrow gas terminal as MNZ carbon store project progresses
10 Apr 2024

Spirit Energy welcomed Simon Fell, MP for Barrow and Furness, to the Barrow gas terminal for an update on progress of the Morecambe Net Zero (MNZ) project, a planned carbon storage facility off the coast of Barrow. 

MNZ has the potential to transform the depleted North and South Morecambe gas fields into one of the largest carbon stores in the UK and Europe, with the capacity to store one gigatonne of CO₂ over its lifetime.

Spirit Energy has operated the Morecambe Bay gas fields for more than 50 years, currently employing more than 300 people at the site. With the gas fields coming to the end of their productive life, the project will provide a multi-billion-pound investment in the local economy and provide continued job security, as well as creating new skilled green jobs in Barrow.

The carbon storage facility offers industrial emitters across the UK a world-leading, permanent decarbonisation solution - helping them to reduce their emissions, extend their lifespan and secure the future of thousands of existing jobs in carbon-intensive industries.  MNZ is already partnering with the Peak Cluster consortium to provide cement and lime producers at the heart of the UK’s construction industry with access to carbon storage, enabling them to meet their net zero goals and protect approximately 2,000 skilled manufacturing jobs across Derbyshire, Staffordshire and Cheshire.

Mr Fell was given a tour of the site by Spirit Energy CEO Neil McCulloch, and Energy Transition Director and MNZ project lead, Matt Browell-Hook.

Simon Fell, Conservative MP for Barrow and Furness said: “It’s been fantastic to visit the Barrow Gas Terminal today to see the MNZ site and hear how the project is progressing. Not only will MNZ breathe new life into these important gas fields, securing the future of those jobs already reliant on them, but it will create hundreds of new local jobs, and place Barrow at the forefront of some really exciting low-carbon innovation. It’s been my pleasure to champion this project in Parliament and to work with Spirit on it. The potential benefits are huge, and incredibly important to Barrow, and wider Cumbria.”

The visit comes after Spirit Energy recently reached a major milestone for its MNZ project by successfully securing a seismic survey vessel to undertake a scope of work in the East Irish Sea. The survey commenced last month and will acquire and process around 500 square kilometres of high-resolution 3D seismic data over the Morecambe Bay gas fields to provide a detailed definition of the subsurface and confirm the significant potential for carbon storage.

Neil McCulloch, CEO of Spirit Energy, said: “We are pleased to welcome Simon Fell MP to the Barrow terminal and to update him on the project’s latest milestones. MNZ will be a world-leading carbon capture project that will support the UK’s net zero transition by providing a cost-effective decarbonisation solution to industrial heartlands across the country, while generating economic growth and creating thousands of jobs in Barrow, Cumbria and across the North West more widely.”