Aberdeen City Council said that it is strengthening its commitment to energy transition and combating climate change as part of its spending plans for 2021/22 and the years beyond.
The £38.4 million hydrogen investment package agreed in the new budget includes £19.4 million for a new production facility hub to power transport and enable the heating of homes.
Other measures include additional electric vehicle charging points and the further greening the Council’s own fleet.
Councillor Douglas Lumsden, co-leader of Aberdeen City Council, said: “Investments like these keep Aberdeen at the forefront of what it does best – innovating, working with industry, and driving energy transition within the UK and Scotland.
“The hydrogen industry has the potential to be worth up to £25 billion a year to Scotland’s economy by 2045 – and we are playing a pivotal role.
“We made these budget decisions around the environmental benefits, but also with an eye on the wider supply chain benefits, and I am delighted that Aberdeen is on the map when it comes to leading the hydrogen revolution.”
The ultimate ambition is that Aberdeen could be an exporter of green hydrogen to UK and European markets in the future.
A further £19m will be made available over five years to enhance the hydrogen refuelling infrastructure and bus programme within the city. And £28m was set aside for the Council’s green fleet replacement programme.
Over the last five years the council has cut its carbon emissions by one third and recently adopted a new climate change plan. Aberdeen’s role in the global energy transition has been further strengthened by plans for an Energy Transition Zone (ETZ) at Aberdeen Harbour South to develop renewable energy sources.
Lumsden said: “As well as unlocking new private sector investment, this work will support industry to leverage existing skills and expertise in the area as well as creating job opportunities.
“Aligning all elements of the net-zero vision for the city, these developments build on projects delivered by the Aberdeen City Region Deal in technology and energy transition.”
Wider Council spending plans include further investment in affordable homes and £150m over the medium term to enhance the city centre and beach.
“Our budget will ensure that economic and environmental success is translated into social success – lifting people out of poverty, improving health and wellbeing, and offering equal opportunities for everyone to flourish and prosper,” said Lumsden.