Plans have been unveiled to create Scotland’s largest renewable energy hub at the Port of Leith.
An investment of £40m will allow the biggest vessels carrying huge wind turbine parts to dock and unload.
Forth Ports, which owns six operations on the Firth of Forth, said the development will support up to 1000 jobs.
Charles Hammond OBE, the company’s group chief executive, said: “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.”
The investment is entirely private, backed by Forth Ports’ shareholders which includes pension funds looking after the money of Canadian Mounted Police, Australian construction workers and English council staff.
Michael Matheson, cabinet secretary for net-zero, energy and transport, 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.”
The 175 acre site will have a massive heavy lifting capability as well as vast areas for cargo handling including manufacturing opportunities.
A review from Aberdeen’s Robert Gordon University found the number of workers in the UK’s offshore energy sector could increase to as much as 220,000 by the end of this decade.
Councillor Adam McVey, City of Edinburgh Council leader, said: “The increase in jobs for people in Leith and across Edinburgh is hugely welcome and underlines our economic resilience as a city.
“The continuing regeneration of clean industry in the docks with the development of the Port of Leith Renewable Energy Hub is an important and welcome step in supporting the needed transition to a cleaner, greener future for the next generation.”
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