An investment blueprint has been developed which could see £1 billion spent on low carbon projects in Cheshire over the next few years with nearly 3 million tonnes of CO2 saved by 2030.

Ikigai Capital is part of a consortium of companies, which has formed a partnership with the Cheshire and Warrington Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) to deliver the  ‘Invest Net Zero Cheshire’ roadmap.

The consortium has identified a portfolio of opportunities across renewable generation, hydrogen, carbon capture, energy storage and smart grids which offer long-term, sustainable investment opportunities in net zero.

Cheshire, in the North West of England, is one of UK’s power houses, featuring major manufacturing employers, including oil refining, glass manufacture, nuclear enrichment, chemical production and automotive. This concentration of industry means the area around Ellesmere Port consumes around 5% of the UK’s energy, with Cheshire West and Chester the fourth largest carbon emitter in the country and a climate emergency declared locally.

The Cheshire & Warrington LEP and some local private sector partners contributed the funding for a study that lasted 10 months, involving more than 40 stakeholders and in excess of 150 hours of interviews. The outcome was a net zero investment plan, setting out immediately investable projects which will create jobs and inclusive growth in the area and deliver value to industry energy users and investors.

The advising consortium, led by The Cheshire Energy Hub, comprises technical advisors The Energy Systems Catapult (energy systems analysis), EA Technology (understanding future electricity network needs); Ikigai Capital (bankability and business case advisor); Peel NRE, part of Peel L&P (the owner and developer of Protos at the heart of the project zone) and SP Energy Networks (the local DNO), and was supported by many other local stakeholders.

The findings of the study were presented at a recent webinar where Clare Hayward, Chair of the Cheshire & Warrington LEP said: “Climate change is the challenge of our generation, and around the world we’re seeing Governments set ever more ambitious targets. We want to make Cheshire and Warrington the most sustainable place in the UK and reach net zero emissions by 2030, which isn’t that far away. To do this we need an integrated, collaborative and bold approach. Investors don’t want to see piecemeal initiatives, they want to see a joined up approach to decarbonisation. There is no better place to invest. We have the vision, a clear path to investment and the eco system needed to deliver.”

Claire O’Neill, former UK Clean Growth Minister and MD World Business Council for Sustainable Development and Ikigai Capital Non-Executive Director, delivered the keynote address at the event: “Cheshire & Warrington are in a leadership position in the UK when it comes to decarbonisation and it’s great to see such first class thinking and impressive collaboration. It’s right that we should be moving away from conversations about government subsidies to discussions about how we can create the right funding structures to attract investment into local net zero projects. Invest Net Zero Cheshire could be a global exemplar of how to deliver investment into clean growth.”

Ged Barlow, Chair of the Cheshire Energy Hub said: “As we recover from the COVID-19 global pandemic and look ahead to the UK’s presidency of the United Nations climate conference, COP 26, the green industrial revolution is more critical than it has ever been. Decarbonising industry is a vital part of the jigsaw and we must act quickly to reduce carbon emissions, safeguard industry and protect jobs. We have developed a roadmap to reaching net zero emissions in Cheshire by 2030 which could unlock £1 billion of capital investment and save nearly 3 million tonnes of carbon. Our unrivalled range of projects collectively offer long-term sustainable investment opportunities and demonstrates why Cheshire is the prime location to invest in net zero.”

Talking about the process, Helena Anderson, COO and co-founder of Ikigai Capital, pointed out that “The study involved understanding industrial energy users’ existing and future energy demands. From this a portfolio of projects was identified and shortlisted based on their potential to reduce carbon emissions. The consortium then engaged in a bankability review exercise to structure each solution for private sector-led funding. This joint technical/financial approach produced an investible roadmap for reaching net zero carbon emissions by 2030. Ikigai Capital is now going to market to understand the appetite from potential investors to fund the pipeline of projects”.

A summary of the study and its findings can be viewed here with further information on the portfolio of projects and business cases available at www.investnzcheshire.co.uk. Please contact Roberto Castiglioni or Helena Anderson at info@ikigai-capital.co.uk to discuss investment opportunities in the area.

The Cheshire Energy Hub represents the sub-region on Net Zero North West – the industry led industrial cluster which is aiming to develop the UK’s first low carbon industrial cluster by 2030.


For more information contact:

Rebecca Eatwell, Font Communications, 07827 353113, rebecca@fontcomms.com

Notes to Editors:


The Cheshire Energy Hub is an energy sector support organisation, funded and strategically driven by industry.  Its members work collaboratively to advance the skills agenda and energy initiatives in the region.  Members include BGS, Burns & McDonnell, C-Tech Innovation, EA Technology, Encirc, Engie, Essar Oil UK, Peel Environmental, Protos, Storengy UK, Tata Chemical and URENCO, together with the Cheshire and Warrington LEP, Cheshire West and Chester Council and the University of Chester’s Thornton Science Park.


Ikigai Capital is a London based, Net Zero bankability consultancy focused on clusters, city and industrial decarbonisation. We bridge the gap between investors, tech, demand and Government to unlock capital investment for sustainable and inclusive regional growth.


Contact Ikigai Capital at info@ikigai-capital.co.uk