wind turbines at sea with beach in foreground

Circular Opportunities in Scotland’s Energy Sector

05 Jul 23

As we move away from traditional sources of energy such as oil and gas and transition toward a low carbon, renewable energy future, the amount of material required in the associated infrastructure will require careful management as valuable assets for Scotland.

Zero Waste Scotland has produced the following reports to demonstrate how Scotland can best manage its transition towards achieving net zero greenhouse gas emissions for domestic energy production.

Mapping Material Demand in Scotland’s Energy Infrastructure

This report estimates the amount of material Scotland has locked up in existing energy assets and will need to build the energy infrastructure required to transition the country’s energy sector to meet its Net Zero ambitions by 2045. Concrete and steel account for more than 85% of this demand, as well as the need for scarce materials, such as lithium-cobalt oxide and copper.

Scotland’s Ports: A Future Vision

The report considers the role Scottish ports can play in achieving a circular economy for Scotland. It highlights opportunities for ports to act as hubs providing space and logistics for offshore energy facilities and identifies ways Scottish ports can embed more circularity in their business practices.

The report underlines the key role that ports can play in facilitating decommissioning of oil and gas infrastructure, particularly in enabling more circular solutions, including remanufacturing.

Steel Reprocessing

In Europe and beyond, demand for green steel products is growing rapidly due to government businesses climate commitments. This report assesses the economic and market case for establishing Electric Arc Furnace (EAF) capacity in Scotland to reprocess scrap steel, all of which is currently exported.   

The report provides critical evidence to the on-going debate.