A second energy boom for Granite City?

At the All Energy exhibition in Aberdeen last week, the buzz was that marine renewables could provide a second boom for the Granite City that could even rival the oil boom.

By 2050 marine renewables could be producing seven times Scotland’s power requirement. By that time, the UK could be exporting the energy equivalent of one billion barrels of oil per year!

Glens of Foudland wind farm

As the focus moves away from onshore turbines to renewables, the industry offers huge potential for a second energy boom in Aberdeen – one that has no end.

Whereas we are now beginning to count down what may be the last two or three decades of North Sea oil and gas, the big benefit of marine renewables is that they will never run down or run out.

International renewables delegates at the exhibition repeatedly said that this country is ahead of the game.

Add to this Aberdeen’s established credentials:
  • A proven ability to learn a new industry and run-with-it to become a world leader.
  • A skilled workforce versed in energy and marine technology.
  • An established energy industry supply base.
  • Marine engineering expertise.
  • The world’s leading subsea engineering cluster.

This has to be a golden opportunity for Aberdeen. We must make it abundantly clear to Scottish and UK government representatives that we expect them to back this opportunity 100%. The potential for the country is huge.

But, let them not make the mistake of trying to move the energy focus elsewhere. The success of the oil industry was the concentration of expertise in Aberdeen. That clustering and cross-fertilisation between businesses in the city is what gave Aberdeen its edge in becoming the world’s No. 2 upstream energy centre.

The governments in Edinburgh and London must now ensure that Aberdeen has the investment in infrastructure that we need to succeed in this second energy boom.

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