Recently, I learned about exciting plans by Northwich-based Tata Chemicals Europe (TCE) to create a solar power generation and storage facility on its 100-year-old industrial waste site.

It’s part of the company’s aim to achieve net-zero emissions by 2030.

That’s an ambition shared by my own party for the whole country while the current Government is only committed to getting there by 2050.

Electricity produced by the solar farm at Wallerscote lime beds is expected to be sold on for homes and local industry given Tata already has an on-site power station.

Not only would this help cut energy bills, it would also create valuable green jobs.

The vision also includes remediation of the lime beds, which cover around 140 acres, while enhancing and safeguarding biodiversity. For the first time, the site would be opened to the public, featuring a circular footpath for residents to enjoy.

Repurposing a brownfield site is a logical step. It aligns with the priority of generating clean energy while bolstering UK energy security, especially given the vulnerabilities exposed by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Tata is showing real commitment to a sustainable future. Last year I took part in the official opening of the UK's largest carbon capture utilisation facility at its Winnington site in a £20 million investment.

But something I continue to hear from business leaders across my patch is that Government needs to step up and support the transition to a green economy.

Shadow Climate Change Secretary Ed Miliband has been outlining how Labour would aim to make Britain a clean energy superpower by 2030.

We would set up publicly-owned energy company GB Energy to invest in renewables like solar, wind and tidal to create good jobs, cut energy bills and deliver energy independence for our country.

Any wealth produced would be returned to the British people.

Labour would also upgrade 19 million homes to ensure they are energy efficient, warmer and cheaper to heat.

Northwich was at the forefront of the industrial revolution and I’m mightily proud we are now at the forefront of the green industrial revolution. 

Together, we can build a sustainable and prosperous future - one that embraces clean energy, lowers costs for our community, and secures green jobs for future generations.

To have your say about the proposed solar farm before plans are lodged, contact the project team: