Aberdeen City Council’s city growth and resources committee agreed the move yesterday following a tender process which started in June 2021.

City growth and resources convener Cllr Ryan Houghton said: ‘I am incredibly proud of this next step Aberdeen is making with our commercial partner bp, which has advised the council on the delivery of our Energy Transition Strategic Infrastructure Plan and this exciting announcement builds on that work.

‘We’re proud that hydrogen is already here in Aberdeen and this significant commercial partnership with bp is set to support our ambitions. We plan to create a blueprint which can be replicated around the world by the cities and regions looking to reach net zero.

‘Aberdeen’s position as a leader in the energy industry requires ongoing investment and partnership and the Hydrogen Hub is a fantastic example.’

Aberdeen City Council started its hydrogen journey over 10 years ago and has demonstrated how demand can be created within cities, using the zero emission fuel to power a fleet of 25 buses, 60 public sector vehicles and waste trucks, as well as the P&J Live events, conference, and entertainments complex.

More than two million passengers have travelled on the city’s hydrogen buses, and CO2 savings to date are in excess of 100 tonnes over the last six years.

A report to the council’s city growth and resources committee said the Hydrogen Hub came about after the council, in partnership with Opportunity North East (ONE) and Scottish Enterprise (SE), appointed Element Energy in 2019 to review the business case for the hydrogen sector in Aberdeen following successful pilot projects, including the Aberdeen hydrogen bus project and council fleet deployment.

The report concluded that collating hydrogen demand across fleets, increasing production and supply of green hydrogen by connecting to large scale renewable generators, and coordinating supply chain and training could lower the price of hydrogen and catalyse use by other growth sectors seeking to decarbonise.

Commenting on the Joint Venture, council leader, Cllr Jenny Laing said: ‘This is a huge announcement for Aberdeen as it supports the delivery of our Net Zero Vision and paves the way for the city to be a world leader in the production of hydrogen-based green fuel and energy.

‘It will help create a cleaner, more sustainable city for local people and it also provides us with the opportunity to create hundreds of skilled jobs and add millions to the Aberdeen economy. Aberdeen has a worldwide reputation as a pioneering hydrogen city and by working in partnership with bp, we intend to put Aberdeen at the forefront of the green economic recovery.’

Louise Kingham, bp’s UK head of country and senior vice president for Europe, added: ‘bp is committed to providing integrated energy solutions to help cities and corporations decarbonise and this hydrogen hub proposal can help do just that.

‘We look forward to working with the local authority to deliver this exciting project, drawing on the skills and expertise of our people and their vast experience delivering complex energy projects.

‘This milestone comes a matter of days after bp and our partner EnBW were named among successful bidders in the ScotWind offshore wind leading round and further demonstrates the leading role bp can play in Scotland’s energy transition.’