WSP appointed to lead Liverpool City Region Energy Strategy

Posted 11th May 2018
4 minutes read
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Professional services and engineering consultancy, WSP has been appointed by Liverpool City Region Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) to develop a new city region energy strategy.

WSP, which employs more than 170 staff in Liverpool, is drawing on resources from its specialist sustainable places team as well as expertise from transport and power networks teams.

The strategy will consider how the city region can best achieve its aim of delivering a sustainable place to live and a future proofed energy system. It may ultimately be adopted as guidance by the City Region Metro Mayor, Steve Rotheram, the Combined Authority and other public-sector partner organisations.

To help inform the strategy and support ambitions to substantially reduce carbon emissions over time, WSP is using a specially developed ‘city region energy model’. The model will be used to profile future energy use up to 2040 by estimating and quantifying the impact of both national policies and local actions.

The energy strategy will reference the work currently underway by the Mersey Tidal Commission. The commission, chaired by Brent Cheshire (former executive chairman at DONG Energy UK – now known as Ørsted), is examining the business case to harness tidal power in the River Mersey and Liverpool Bay to create large-scale clean and predictable energy. The tidal power project is a key priority for the Metro Mayor and Combined Authority.

WSP has also supported the LEP in hosting a series of stakeholder engagement events. These public workshops were used to gather the views of local business and consult senior leaders from a diverse range of organisations including academia, local authorities, community energy groups, energy networks and technology suppliers.

Comments Joe Chambers, principal energy consultant at WSP in Liverpool: “The UK energy landscape is changing faster than ever before with new technologies and business models having a profound impact on the whole energy system. Liverpool City Region is well placed to benefit from this and has great natural assets including offshore wind in Liverpool Bay and the energy potential of the tidal resource. It also has a fantastic local-skills base and more than 1,400 companies that already are part of the low carbon sector employing 22,000 people, contributing £2billion to the regional economy.

“This strategy will highlight some major challenges for the city region. These include how to encourage greater energy efficiency in homes and how to scale-up the deployment of renewable energy generation, energy storage and electric vehicles. WSP is excited to be working on this important project that aims to provide a route map towards the decarbonisation of the city.”

The project builds on WSP’s previous work in Liverpool which includes delivering the Liverpool John Lennon Airport Low Carbon Heating Strategy in 2017 and producing an opinion paper for Liverpool Council reviewing the role that might be played by local authorities in the coming transformation of electricity networks.