Two Scottish decarbonisation projects have been boosted by UK Government funding to further their work on CO2 reduction.

Pale Blue Dot Energy, the Aberdeen-based lead developer behind the Acorn Project, is set to receive around £100,000 to develop its plans for deploying CO2 gathering and shipping infrastructure to decarbonise the industrial cluster in the Central Belt of Scotland.

The second project, a partnership led by NECCUS (the North East Carbon Capture, Utilisation and Storage Alliance), attracted a similar amount to develop a roadmap, which will set out in detail how low carbon and Net Zero industrial clusters can be achieved in the coming years.

Crucially, the funding allows both organisations to progress to the next round of the UK Government’s Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund.

This means they are eligible to compete for further funding, for which £131m is available for the deployment element of the industrial strategy, while £8m is available for the roadmap work.

Minister for Energy, Connectivity, and the Islands Paul Wheelhouse said, “Scotland is delivering on its world-leading emissions reduction targets and ambition to be Net Zero by 2045, and CCUS is a vital component of our energy transition which supports industrial decarbonisation.”

“The Climate Emergency remains, and it is therefore vital we have a strong, green economic recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic.”

“Because these technologies are critical to the essential energy transition and to ensuring a just transition, we are supporting the development and implementation of CCUS technologies, including continued Scottish Government backing for Pale Blue Dot Energy and NECCUS.”

Sian Wilson, Senior Manager of Crown Estate Scotland, which provides the rights for CO2 storage and is an active supporter of both projects, said, “The end goal for the work is that Scotland can offer the next generation a truly sustainable future with good quality jobs created from clean, inclusive, growth across a range of sectors.”

“This is something we wholly support and are therefore pleased to be involved in this project.”