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The Falkirk Economic Partnership met this week to progress its ambitious plans for a ‘Just Transition’ towards a net zero carbon future with investment, jobs and skills at the heart of its vision.

The Partnership heard of progress on the Falkirk and Grangemouth Investment Zone  which includes proposals for a Sustainable Manufacturing Campus in Grangemouth focusing on capturing and using carbon and Industrial Biotechnology projects such as producing fuel from whisky waste and sugar beets.  

Other proposals include a Centre for Excellence in Green Bus Technology including hydrogen, Community owned Solar Energy, Green Routeways and an Outdoor Art Park.  These will advance Falkirk and Scotland’s economic recovery and revitalise town centres with a transport interchange in the centre of Falkirk and new tourism development on the canal corridor. 

The Partnership meeting coincided with the release of the Scottish Government’s Climate Change Action Plan update which has reinforced the national commitment to carbon reduction.  Grangemouth has almost 30% of industrial emissions, Scotland’s largest port and is a significant base for logistics.  As such the town’s transition to net zero is crucial to Scotland reaching its carbon reduction targets by 2045.

The Just Transition movement aims to enable the change to a net zero economy, whilst retaining economic prosperity and local jobs.  Focusing this transition process at Grangemouth will ensure that as industries adapt and new technologies are brought forward we retain a sustainable manufacturing base and high value jobs in the area.

Councillor Cecil Meiklejohn, Leader of Falkirk Council said: “COVID-19 has had a devastating effect on the health, wellbeing and economy of our area in 2020.  The Council and its partners recognise the need for action and are fully committed to ensuring that the Falkirk area emerges from the current crisis well prepared for a strong economic recovery.  

“Focusing our plans on the transition to net zero carbon will ensure that once the current crisis is behind us, we can focus on a future that will preserve our areas prosperity and that our children can look forward to a prosperous, sustainable future.”

Find out more on the Scottish Government’s update to the Climate Change Plan.