A South Cumbrian MP said a forthcoming project for a carbon storage facility in Barrow would offer ‘huge economic and environmental benefits’ to the region.

Spirit’s Energy’s plan to turn Rampside Gas Terminals and gas fields into a carbon storage cluster is estimated to generate a £1.8 billion boost for the economy by 2050 – and support thousands of jobs.

The company says it has partnered with a group of cement and lime producers in the Peak District to permanently store close to four million tonnes of industrial carbon dioxide emissions in the Morecambe Net Zero (MNZ) carbon store each year from 2030.

MP for Barrow and Furness Simon Fell said: “It was a pleasure to speak in Parliament last night at the launch of the MNZ | Peak Cluster joint vision.

“This partnership between Spirit Energy and the Peak Cluster is a real win/win. It is funded by these businesses at risk and would offer huge economic and environmental benefits to the region if given the green light.”

According to the report rather than natural gas being extracted from the Morecambe Bay Gas Fields, 4 million tonnes of industrial CO 2 emissions from Peak Cluster will be stored in MNZ each year from 2030.

Mr Fell added: “The project is so exciting – and not just because Barrow is at the heart of it – but because it offers the opportunity to create and safeguard over 13,000 jobs, decarbonise 40% of the UK’s cement and lime industry, and would utilise the gas fields under Morecambe Bay to store over a gigaton of carbon emissions.

“It has been my pleasure to work with Spirit, the CCSA and Peak Cluster on this project as it has developed over the years.”

The MNZ Peak cluster will work in three stages. Carbon Dioxide will first be captured by specialist equipment in Derbyshire and Staffordshire. Then CO2 will be transported via a newly built pipeline to the coast where it will be transported offshore to the storage facility.

Following that CO2 will be injected into rock formations deep beneath the East Irish Sea for permanent storage, the report states .

MP Alex Cunningham, chair of the carbon capture usage and storage all-party parliamentary group, said: “The MNZ-Peak Cluster partnership is one of the most exciting prospective CCS projects I have seen in my role as Chair of the APPG.

“It is one of the most advanced projects in the UK, offering an opportunity to repurpose one of the UK’s largest gas fields into a world-leading carbon store, accepting carbon from an industry that has been a cornerstone of the Peak District’s economy for centuries.

“Beyond the significant economic benefits of the project, the scale of storage on offer makes the MNZ-Peak Cluster a project that will be nationally and internationally significant.”