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State of the art net zero facility open for business

11 July 2023


A major Teesside University facility, which will play a key role in the successful delivery of the UK’s net zero ambitions, is now complete.

Net Zero Industry Innovation Centre
Net Zero Industry Innovation Centre

Teesside University’s Net Zero Industry Innovation Centre (NZIIC), based at Teesside Advanced Manufacturing Park in Middlesbrough, is a £13.1m national centre of excellence for net zero technologies. The NZIIC will support the ongoing drive for clean energy and position Teesside firmly at the heart of the UK’s green industrial revolution.

The NZIIC has already set the standard for carbon reduction, with the build itself hitting its net zero target, through innovative measures including a zero-waste initiative, living roof and the use of recyclable materials throughout.

This approach ensured that the NZIIC also received the BREAAM Outstanding Award for building techniques that reduce the impact on the environment during construction and operation.

The NZIIC will help initiate change to address the climate emergency through industry partnerships, skills development, research and innovation, and support Teesside University in achieving its commitment to become a net zero institution by 2030.

A number of innovative projects are already being undertaken, including developing new processes to create recycled workwear, finding alternative uses for food waste to reduce landfill and replacing non-renewable plastics with sustainable alternatives throughout the supply chain.

The NZIIC is also involved in an £11m Research England-funded project to support hydrogen innovation in the Tees Valley and is engaged with multiple industry partners on a global scale to support its work.

The centre is also establishing itself as a global hub of net zero expertise with a substantial collaboration with partners in South Africa to support hydrogen research and a transatlantic centre of excellence for decarbonisation in place with the University of Illinois in the United States.

Professor Paul Croney, OBE, Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive at Teesside University, said: “Our NZIIC is set to play a leading role in the region, shaping and creating a cleaner and greener future and helping businesses achieve their net zero ambitions through pioneering research and state-of-the-art facilities.

“We are incredibly proud about the future ambitions of the NZIIC and we are confident it will place Teesside firmly at the heart of the UK’s green industrial revolution.”

We are incredibly proud about the future ambitions of the NZIIC and we are confident it will place Teesside firmly at the heart of the UK’s green industrial revolution.

Professor Paul Croney, OBE

Dr Gari Harris, Director of NZIIC, added: “NZIIC’s mission is to engage with business and industry and support their net zero ambitions.

“We already have many ground-breaking projects underway which will help to create hundreds more clean energy jobs through aligning the University’s expertise with industry need and Government priorities.”

The NZIIC development received £5.2m in funding from the Tees Valley Mayor and Combined Authority, and the European Regional Development Fund.

Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen said: “Investment we’re landing in industries of the future such as hydrogen, offshore wind and carbon capture is putting Teesside at the centre of national ambitions to reduce carbon emissions.

“The new NZIIC will become a critical catalyst to help us achieve our ambitions, collaborating with global experts, as well as helping develop new innovative schemes that will target carbon reduction at every level.

“This is yet another way Teesside University is going from strength to strength to support the healthier, safer and cleaner jobs and industries of tomorrow.”

The NZIIC is one of the projects in Teesside University’s ongoing campus masterplan, which has seen £280m invested to date – including the award-winning Student Life Building, Cornell Quarter student accommodation and National Horizon’s Centre at the University’s Darlington Campus.

Malcolm Page, Chief Operating Officer at Teesside University, said: “The campus masterplan has delivered significant investment in the university estate across the Tees Valley to date, delivering vibrant and modern facilities to enhance the experience of students, staff and partners”.

“The NZIIC project has also made a major contribution to social value, prioritising local spend and jobs creation, supporting the University’s mission to transform lives and economies.

“In addition, we are delighted that this latest development also demonstrates a transformative approach to construction, setting the standard for sustainability and net zero commitment."

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