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£40m investment

Forth Ports plans Scotland’s largest energy hub

Charles Hammond: committed

Forth Ports has unveiled proposals to create Scotland’s largest renewable energy hub on a 175 acre site in Leith.

This £40m investment will see the creation of a bespoke, riverside marine berth capable of accommodating the world’s largest offshore wind installation vessels.

The facility will feature a heavy lift capability of up to 100 tonnes per square metre, backed up by 35 acres of adjacent land for logistics and marshalling.

This will be supplemented by the upgrading of a 140 acre cargo handling site to accommodate lay down; assembly; supply chain and manufacturing opportunities. The total area is equivalent to around 100 full size football pitches.

The Port of Leith Renewable Energy Hub has the potential to:

·     Make a major contribution to Scotland achieving its 2045 net zero greenhouse gases target

·         Secure the Firth of Forth as the driver for Scotland’s green energy transition

·         Help spearhead Edinburgh’s and Scotland’s Covid-19 recovery plan

·         Support up to 1,000 high quality, long term direct jobs and about 2,000 indirect jobs

Charles Hammond, group chief executive, said: “We are committed to playing a significant role in the renewable energy sector and, through that, Scotland’s energy transition to net zero as we also tackle the challenges of Covid-19 recovery and economic regeneration.

“This is a pump-priming investment in logistics and marine infrastructure at the Port of Leith as we harness Scotland’s natural resources for future generations and has the potential to play a significant part in our forthcoming Firth of Forth Green Port bid.

“Leith’s proximity to the North Sea, which is set to become home to many more offshore wind developments, coupled with the natural deep waters of the Firth of Forth, makes this an ideal location to support not only those developments already planned, but the pipeline of projects that are sure to follow.

“That’s why we’re prepared to invest our land, our expertise and our shareholders’ money to further build and strengthen Scotland’s renewables supply chain to deliver new long-term jobs.

“Forth Ports is committed to both help make Scotland’s renewables future a reality and help it meet its carbon reduction targets.”

Net Zero, Energy and Transport Secretary, Michael Matheson, said: “The Scottish Government has set ambitious targets to increase offshore wind capacity to 11 GW of energy installed by 2030 – enough to power more than eight million homes.

“This commitment, which will support our transition to a net-zero economy by 2045, capitalises on the fact that Scotland’s seas have some of the best offshore wind resources in the world.”

Port of Cromarty in hydrogen deal

Port of Cromarty Firth has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Norwegian firm Gen2 Energy to create a commercial pathway to import green hydrogen from Norway into the UK energy market.

The partnership will provide a security of supply for the Cromarty Firth’s own plans for a largescale electrolyser facility, and will guarantee green hydrogen to those who want access to the clean energy by mid-2023.

The MoU is seen as a massive boost in the bid to establish a green hydrogen hub in the Cromarty Firth, adding an international angle to its aim to produce, store and supply hydrogen to the Highland region, other parts of Scotland, the UK and Europe.

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