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May 4, 2023

Setting Sail Towards Net-Zero: The Green Port of Aberdeen

The Port of Aberdeen is planning to become the world's first net-zero port. Will others follow in their footsteps?

Port of Aberdeen to become first Net-Zero Port

The Port of Aberdeen is targeting net zero emissions from visiting vessels to its day-to-day operation by 2040. On the 28th of April, the Port of Aberdeen announced its plans to commit £55 million over the next decade to transition to the UK’s first net zero port by 2040.

“Today we launched our net zero strategy with the aim of becoming the UK’s first net zero port by 2024. Strong partnerships and investment across the public and private sectors are essential to deliver this transformational change which will deliver significant benefits for the environment, local communities, and wider maritime sector.” – Bob Sanguinetti, Chief Executive, Port of Aberdeen.

To track the progress of ports’ net-zero goal, they will be using the data from 2019 as a baseline. 55,000 tonnes of CO2 were emitted throughout this year.

Action has already taken place by the port, with electric vehicles being introduced and LED lighting being installed along the quaysides. A wide range of projects are now also underway or have been planned for the future, such as hydrotreated vegetable oil for port-owned vessels and equipment. They have also been exploring the feasibility of onsite energy generation for the port estate.

The £55 million commitment is added to the already invested£500 million on infrastructure in recent years. Including the transformation of South Harbour which will help the energy transition take place such as offshore wind energy and hydrogen energy.

Have a look at the Port of Aberdeen’s article for more information!

What is a Net-Zero or Green Port?

Green/sustainable ports are ports which emit little or no harmful gasses into the atmosphere. There are thousands of ports in Europe alone, all of which emit thousands of tonnes of carbon dioxide each year. Sustainable or net-zero ports are a way of reducing these emissions and creating an eco-friendlier environment.

Ports can reduce their emissions by switching to renewable sources of energy to power their equipment and building, using eco-friendly fuel types for their vessels and installing LED lighting across all of their sights. They can also use electric vehicles and other electrical equipment which do not use fossil fuels to run.

Why other ports may follow in Aberdeen’s Footsteps

As we said previously, there are thousands of ports in Europe alone, all of which emit lots of CO2, these ports, after seeing the work from the Port of Aberdeen, may take more steps towards a more sustainable future, or even try to hit net zero.

The benefits of running a net-zero or eco-friendly port include cheaper energy, this could be due to them producing their own, or taking advantage of cheaper renewable energy in the future and using more efficient equipment such as LED lighting, helping the fight against climate change, and becoming more popular ports, as this could be an attraction for many shipping or cruise/tourist companies who are more climate aware.


In conclusion, the Port of Aberdeen's commitment to becoming the UK's first net-zero port by 2040 is a significant step towards a more sustainable future for ports around the world. By investing £55 million over the next decade, the port aims to reduce its carbon emissions from visiting vessels to its day-to-day operations. The use of renewable sources of energy, eco-friendly fuel types, and LED lighting are just some of the ways that ports can reduce their emissions and create an eco-friendlier environment. The benefits of running a net-zero or eco-friendly port are numerous, including cheaper energy, a reduction in carbon emissions, and an increase in popularity. Other ports around the world may take inspiration from Aberdeen's commitment and take steps towards a more sustainable future.

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