ENERGY infrastructure expert, SSE Energy Solutions, has signed a strategic partnership with the owners of Hunterston Port and Resource Campus (Hunterston PARC) to provide renewable energy for the proposed development of the site.
Peel Ports Group, the UK’s second largest port operator, is developing a significant energy and marine campus on 300 acres of land within the huge Clydeport facility in Ayrshire.
As part of the development’s plans, SSE will provide the infrastructure and renewable energy to power the operations of the park.
The port operator’s vision is to create a business park which will bring together leading industry operators, world-class academics and innovators to deliver technological advances in areas such as power generation and aquaculture.
The Scottish Government has set a target date for net zero emissions of all greenhouse gases by 2045 and SSE has an ambitious £12.5bn capital investment plan to accelerate progress towards net zero over the next five years up to 2026, the majority of which will go to low-carbon infrastructure.
Nathan Sanders, managing director at SSE Energy Solutions, said:
“The Hunterston PARC project aligns perfectly with our Just Transition and Social Value strategies. We believe in working closely with communities and local businesses to tackle climate change and this development will bring jobs and investment to the West of Scotland, as well as contributing to the UK’s net zero ambitions.”
The Hunterston site, which is just 40 minutes from Glasgow, is seen as an attractive proposition for development as it features a deep-water port, has on-site rail connectivity and crucially it is already connected to the national grid. The site was also earlier this year granted national development status under the Scottish Government’s National Planning Framework 4 (NPF4), creating opportunities for a slew of new renewable energy developments to come onstream.
The port group previously announced a long-term deal with sub-sea cabling company XLCC for a major facility at Hunterston PARC to include two factories, which could further generate 900 jobs. It gained final planning approval this year.
Peel Ports Group is committed to becoming net-zero across all its sites by 2040, putting it five years ahead of the Scottish government’s national decarbonisation targets.
Lewis McIntyre, managing director of Port Services at Peel Ports Group, said:
“We are extremely proud to welcome a partner as significant and well-respected as SSE to Hunterston PARC. This important agreement will support a wide range of other developments across our facility in meeting their energy needs.
“One of the key, long term aims of Peel Ports Group has been to repurpose this nationally important port for the blue and green economies, and we look forward to working with SSE on this partnership in the coming years.”