SITES from Longannet to Rosyth are being evaluated as Forth Ports prepares to submit a ‘green port’ bid to the Scottish Government.

The proposal will encompass ‘key ports, industrial complexes and logistic centres’ along both sides of the Firth of Forth and at Edinburgh Airport.

Forth Ports, which operates and owns the Port of Rosyth, will evaluate sites in West Fife along the north shore.

In addition, Grangemouth – home to Scotland’s freight hub and a petrochemical cluster – and a new £40 million renewable energy hub at Leith will be included in the proposal, as will Edinburgh Airport for its international connectivity.

Forth Ports believes that the green port will play a major role in Scotland’s recovery from Covid-19 and accelerate the country’s transition to meeting net zero targets, by providing investment incentives, with a long-term positive impact on Scotland’s economic growth.

Charles Hammond OBE, group chief executive of Forth Ports, said: “Our interest in creating a Firth of Forth green port is underpinned by our belief in the government policy behind it to create economic zones for investment and regeneration and we are committed to supporting the development of this green port policy.

“The Firth of Forth, spanning from Central Scotland to the country’s east coast, is the critical engine for Scotland’s economic recovery. The creation of the Firth of Forth green port will encourage greater inclusive growth, fair work practices and help deliver Scotland’s net zero economy.

“We are starting to see investment and regeneration benefits since the Thames Freeport announcement earlier this year and we believe it is as important that Scotland’s main industrial and business area sees similar benefits in a similar timescale.

“This would support the transition to net zero and at the same time, create good quality green industrial employment.”

Dunfermline and West Fife MP Douglas Chapman said: “I welcome this bid by Forth Ports which I believe could create a new economic stimulus for West Fife and make the Firth of Forth the ‘go to place’ for businesses to start, grow and to develop.

"We have known for some time that the West Fife coast is packed with potential from Longannet through to Inverkeithing, so this opportunity should be looked on positively as a platform to deliver jobs and prosperity.

“As an member of the all party group on free ports for the past few years, I’ve been watching closely as the UK Government developed plans for eight free ports in England. The green ports strategy championed by the Scottish Government takes some of the key elements of a free port and adds in vital protections for fair work, apprenticeships and sustainable economic growth which we all want to see as part of a future Scotland.

“While the Scottish Government has still to finalise its prospectus for green ports, Forth Ports have given the initiative a huge vote of confidence through this announcement and I look forward to seeing more of the detailed plans as they unfold.”