Ambitious bid for Clyde Green Freeport presented by public-private partners
AN AMBITIOUS proposal to create up to 30,000 new jobs, attract £2.5 billion in capital investment and transform nearly 600 hectares of vacant and derelict land into key locations for a new green Freeport has been unveiled.
The bid for Clyde Green Freeport would deliver a multi-billion pound boost to the Glasgow region’s economy and accelerate regional, national and UK net zero targets.
The official bid has been submitted to the Scottish and UK Governments through a partnership between Glasgow Airport, Clydeport of Peel Ports, Mossend International Railfreight Park in North Lanarkshire and Glasgow City Area Councils.
The bid has already attracted support from many key companies and organizations based or operating in the Glasgow area, including Caterpillar, Malcolm Group, SP Energy Networks, Glasgow and Strathclyde Universities, Morrison Construction and Loganair.
A green freeport is a large zoned area within a defined boundary that includes a rail, sea, or airport. Operators and companies in the area can benefit from a set of tax and other incentives.
“Our offer is multi-modal, spanning air, sea and rail, and will further unlock global trade, doubling the capacity to move products from across Scotland to the rest of the UK, Europe and the rest of the UK. beyond,” said Kevin Rush, Clyde Green Freeport Bid Senior Manager. Regional Economic Growth Officer and Director for the Glasgow region.
“It will deliver an £18bn increase in GVA through to 2034. Vitally, it will tackle the region’s biggest economic challenges – raising productivity and generating more inclusive growth. This will be achieved by accelerating our world-class innovation economy and creating tens of thousands of jobs in communities across the region with high levels of deprivation. Almost 40% of Scotland’s most deprived communities are in the Clyde Green Freeport area.
“With the largest City Deal in the UK and the legacy of COP26, the Glasgow City region has a proven track record of delivery. As Scotland’s economic engine, with unparalleled connectivity across the UK and beyond, we have everything in place to deliver a successful global green freeport for our region, residents, businesses, communities. Scotland and the UK.
Key to Clyde Green Freeport’s bid is a bold decarbonisation plan that would accelerate the net zero ambitions of the Scottish and UK governments. The Clyde Green Freeport would reach net zero by 2040 and include a new district heating system; waste-to-energy projects; renewable energy generation and green fuel deployment projects for air, rail, road and maritime transport in industries that have been dominated by carbon – including a new £1bn hydrogen plant which could supply 25% of Scottish heavyweights.
The details of the three modes are as follows:
The world’s first climate-neutral airport cluster would be created at Glasgow Airport and Advanced Manufacturing Innovation District Scotland (AMIDS) in Renfrewshire through plans for a solar farm, district heating network, fleet of vehicles electric and a multi-fuel hub. Clyde Green Freeport presents a fantastic opportunity to propel Scotland’s aerospace sector into a leading role in the decarbonisation of Jet Zero air travel and an increased share of the additional £39bn and 150,000 jobs associated with it.
The 185 hectare cluster includes the airport and AMIDS and is an established hub of jobs, innovation and connectivity which will be boosted by the opening of the National Manufacturing Institute Scotland (NMIS) and the Medicines Manufacturing Innovation Centre. This will be a priority for the aerospace, advanced manufacturing and life sciences sectors – all of which are highly skilled, high value-added and export-oriented – complementing existing major companies such as Boeing. , Loganair, British Airways Maintenance, Thermo Fisher and Doosan Babcock.
A new state-of-the-art cargo facility will double cargo handling capacity, enabling the airport to increase the value of Scottish exports beyond the 25% it currently handles and making a vital contribution to meeting UK and Scottish to reach £1 trillion in exports. annually and bringing the share of GDP generated by exports to 25% respectively.
Mossend in North Lanarkshire is home to a major rail freight hub and rail terminal. Clyde Green Freeport would see 283 hectares of land regenerated with £17m of investment unlocked through tax breaks and, in the longer term, £300m to develop the site and create the necessary infrastructure.
A new, high-capacity, £44m carbon-free rail interchange would be developed with eight 775m rail sidings served by two electric gantries, electric shunters, transhipment facilities and associated road and rail access infrastructure. Additionally, there will be a net zero freight park consisting of 2.1 million square feet of manufacturing and logistics buildings and associated facilities.
This would meet growing export demand for all of Scotland and support the modal shift from road to rail, saving 225,000 tonnes of carbon a year.
It would also create an opportunity for a heavy vehicle manufacturing centre, resulting in £120m investment and over 500 jobs, as well as the manufacture, maintenance and operation of innovative new freight railcars, with a investment estimated at £55 million.
The Greenock Deep Ocean Terminal would double its capacity, with over £16m of investment, to enable a modal shift of the 27,000 lorries that travel north to south each year as part of a bold program to decarbonise the port. This will unlock decarbonized global trade for businesses across Scotland and achieve net zero by 2040.
There will be investments in electric cranes and jumpers, new low-carbon marine fuel bunkering capacity to support green fleets, and low-carbon heating using underground and river technologies.
And an improved logistics management system will improve vehicle movement efficiency, save fuel and time, and improve air quality.
In Inverclyde, the regeneration of 85 hectares of land along the River Clyde, made possible by tax site benefits, would generate £36 million in new investment to upgrade, reclaim and regenerate land that would otherwise not be commercially viable.
Upgrading and replacing existing infrastructure will generate a hub for direct access to the sea, for businesses such as seafood processing, expansion of onshore turbine operation in KGV, facilities salt, cement and recycling, and the beverage industry.
Ross Nimmo, Head of Planning and Development at Glasgow Airport, said: “The connectivity offered by our airport plays a key role in supporting the country’s economy and the export of Scottish goods and services to the world.
“We are a carbon neutral airport with a clear roadmap to achieve net zero carbon by the mid-2030s.”
“The Clyde Green Freeport will be the catalyst to ensure Scotland can balance the huge economic opportunities a successful bid would bring with our country’s climate change responsibilities.”
“The new Mossend terminal will be the first carbon-free terminal in the UK, reducing the number of heavy goods vehicles passing through Scotland by 25%, which will change logistics across Scotland and contribute significantly to the essential reduction of the net zero.
“The MIRP terminal, at full capacity, will save 225,000 tonnes of carbon a year, two-thirds of the Scottish Government’s current carbon reduction target,” said Andrew Stirling, Peter D Stirling Ltd and Mossend International Railfreight Park Director.
James McSporran, Port Director of Peel Ports’ Clydeport, said: “With its origins on the Clyde dating back to 1858 initially as the Clyde Navigation trust, Clydeport has been a mainstay in supporting industry by importing and exporting goods reaching 1 million tonnes of freight from its KGV facility to 60,000 containers passing through Greenock.It remains an important player in developing Clyde’s industrial growth and is at the heart of the Clyde Green Freeport bid initiative, providing not only the means to serve local markets, but also enable global reach through internal connectivity to other UK ports such as Liverpool and Medway.