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£15million funding awarded to accelerate Aberdeen Hydrogen Hub

Hydrogen fuel is already used by several vehicles within Aberdeen City Council's arsenal.

An additional £15million has been awarded to Aberdeen City Council to accelerate its plans for a new hydrogen hub.

The announcement came on Hydrogen Day at the COP26 conference in Glasgow.

The funding is part of the Scottish Government’s wider Energy Transition Fund, which will support the growth of a hydrogen transport fleet across the north east.

A case study presented at the summit outlined the suitability of Aberdeen as a pioneering hydrogen hub and would act as the blueprint for other regions looking to adopt low-carbon energy sources.

Several Aberdeen City Council services are now run on hydrogen power, such as buses and road service vehicles.

City council leader Jenny Laing said: “The interest and investment in Aberdeen’s hydrogen economy continues to grow and COP26 has been a catalyst for showcasing our credentials and positioning Aberdeen as a prime location for further green investment.

“Our ultimate aim is to position Aberdeen as a climate positive city and at the same time, ensure jobs and training opportunities for those living and working here.”

Hydrogen hubs expected to produce 200MW in the next five years

To capitalise on the massive opportunities through low-carbon alternatives, the North East Scotland Hydrogen Ambition (NESH2A) Steering Committee has been created.

It will be their job to support efforts to deliver 1GW or 20% of the UK’s low carbon hydrogen production target by 2032.

It is estimated that successful adoption and implementation of hydrogen energy production in the north-east could create up to 30,000 jobs by 2040.

Mike Fleming, chairman of the NESH2A Steering Committee, spoke to delegates at COP26 today and described the north-east as “ideally placed” to deliver a “substantial proportion” of the UK’s low carbon requirements.

Hydrogen Action Plan’s ambitious goals

During Hydrogen Day, the Scottish Government also announced ambitious £100million plans to develop capabilities further.

The Hydrogen Action Plan outlines how to meet the target of 25GW of green and blue hydrogen production by 2045, and scale up hydrogen production to meet a sixth of Scotland’s energy needs by 2030.

The five-year capital investment programme will focus on supporting regional hubs such as Aberdeen’s with ambitious renewable energy plans.

An initial £10million will be made available through the Hydrogen Innovation Fund which will launch next year to help lower costs in the highly technical emerging sector.

The Aberdeen Exhibition and Conference Centre has utilised hydrogen fuel for heating.

Net Zero and Energy Secretary Michael Matheson said: “Hydrogen has an important role to play in our journey to a net-zero economy, by supporting the bold, urgent action required to deliver cleaner, greener energy and also by supporting a just transition – creating good, green jobs for our highly skilled workforce.

“Scotland has the resources, the people and the ambition to become a world leader in hydrogen production and our Hydrogen Action Plan sets out how we will work collaboratively with the energy sector to drive progress over the next five years.

“Both renewable and low-carbon hydrogen will play an increasingly important role in Scotland’s energy transition.

“We are investing £100 million in renewable hydrogen projects over this parliament and, in addition to this, I am pleased to announce the expansion of our Energy Transition Fund to support the development of a Hydrogen Hub in Aberdeen and help the region be at the forefront of the energy sector’s net-zero transformation.”

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