YORK'S MP is calling on the Government to invest £171m in an ambitious venture which looks set to create 4,000 jobs and put the city at the heart of the global bioeconomy.

Rachael Maskell, York Central MP, has urged ministers to back BioYorkshire - a 10-year plan to transform York and Yorkshire into the UK hub for green innovation and enterprise.

The project, led by the University of York, Askham Bryan College and Fera Science Ltd., harnesses the expertise of scientists and industry experts.

York Press:

Fera Science, based at the York Biotech Campus, near York, is a key player in BioYorkshire.

BioYorkshire's vision is to drive a new era of bio-manufacturing and farming, reduce carbon emissions and contribute to the UK’s net zero ambitions.

By using renewable, biological resources to create greener products which minimise waste and reduce reliance on fossil fuel, it estimates it will reduce 2.8 million tonnes of CO2e and reduce UK waste to landfill by 1.2 million tonnes per year.

The innovation skills developed will add an estimated £1.4bn in Gross Value Added within the region, creating more than 4,000 jobs across Yorkshire and the UK.

Ms Maskell has invited ministers to visit and see the project first hand, telling The Press the Government needed to 'realise the opportunity' in the wake of COP26.

"The commitment we are looking for is £171m. We can't delay this. We need to see the investment now."

The project builds on a track record of strategic research, with the University of York judged first in the UK for bioscience impact outside academia in the last Government assessment exercise.

Vice chancellor, Professor Charlie Jeffery said: “The North of England already has the facilities, specialised research and innovation capability, and industrial capacity to deliver a world-leading bioeconomy based on crop science, agri-tech and industrial biotechnology.

“BioYorkshire’s unique partnership will coordinate and further develop these capabilities and resources to create a major economic opportunity for the region. We can deliver fundamental changes to the way we live, not only here in the north of England but globally.”

Speaking at an adjournment debate on Monday, the MP said BioYorkshire was an opportunity to bring 'skills, jobs and hope'.

“When opportunity comes, to accelerate our path to net zero, to cut carbon, to protect our biodiversity, to end the plastic endemic, to enable a carbon negative future, to put investment in sustainability, it must be grasped,” she told MPs.

“BioYorkshire is Yorkshire’s green new deal - developed over the past two years, seeded from years of research and applied application, and already demonstrating the power of its science. A green industrial revolution waiting to scale up and level up.

“It will not only place York and Yorkshire at the heart of the UK biosciences economy, but the UK at the heart of the global bioeconomy.

"It will use world-class science and local expertise to turn lab technologies to fully scaled-up applications to deliver profitable, bio-based production of chemicals, materials, and fuels, and enable productive, net-zero food, feed, farming and wider land use practices."

Prof Ian Graham, BioYorkshire’s director, said: “Our research programmes will offer truly cross disciplinary, innovative approaches to tackle industrial and societal challenges: we have an outstanding track record of research to benefit society.”