The port is targeting net zero emissions from vessels visiting the port, as well as the port’s own operations, by 2040.
In April 2023 the Port of Aberdeen announced its commitment to invest £55 million over the next 10 years to become the UK’s first net zero port by 2040. This means being an exemplar and targeting net zero emissions from vessels visiting the port (scope 3), as well as the port’s own operations (scope 1 and 2).
This ambitious target is at the core of the Port of Aberdeen’s net zero strategy which focuses on collaborating with stakeholders across the private and public sectors to reduce emissions in the port, facilitate future low carbon fuels and support the energy transition.
To track its progress towards net zero, Port of Aberdeen will measure its emissions against a 2019 baseline, with 55,000 tonnes of CO2 equivalent emitted across scope 1, 2, and 3. Notably, 97% of emissions were attributed to 9,500 vessel arrivals, recorded as scope 3.
Additionally, the port is measuring performance against a carbon intensity metric based on gross vessel tonnage, once the new Aberdeen South Harbour development has been fully operational for 12 months. You can read more about the port’s emissions and net zero strategy here.
The introduction of shore power at scale, starting with first power at three berths in 2024, and facilitating low carbon alternative fuels for client vessels are expected to generate significant reductions in emissions in the years to come. Achieving success in these areas will require a phased approach and strong partnerships with stakeholders, investors, and vessel owners.
The port has already taken action to reduce the environmental impact of its operations, starting with the roll-out of electric vehicles and installation of LED lighting on the quaysides. A wide range of projects are now underway or planned, such as the trial of hydrotreated vegetable oil for port-owned vessels and equipment and exploring the feasibility of onsite energy generation for the port estate.
Aberdeen has positioned itself as a leading port for collaboration on maritime decarbonisation, securing funding and partnering on the first three rounds of the Department for Transport’s Clean Maritime Demonstration Competition, and working with industry partners on innovative green projects.
The £55 million net zero commitment comes after the port has already invested more than half a billion pounds in infrastructure in recent years. This includes the transformational South Harbour expansion which will unlock growth opportunities in the energy transition, including offshore wind, hydrogen, and decommissioning.
Over the next 12 months (2023-4), the port will focus on:
- Completing feasibility testing and implementation of hydrotreated vegetable oil for port handling equipment, machinery, and vessels.
- Procuring a renewable electricity tariff, with initial feasibility and cost-analysis exercises planned for the implementation of onsite clean energy.
- Implementing shore power at three berths, with suitability analysis planned for the phased approach to installing across remaining berths.
- Accelerating the switch to electric company cars and reviewing the suitability and timeframe for transferring plant and machinery to low carbon alternatives.
- Engaging with stakeholders such as vessel owners, employees, and tenants to collaboratively make steps in carbon mitigation.