New Port of Aberdeen & CessCon Decom decommissioning hub set to deliver jobs boost

CessCon Decom (CessCon) will launch a decommissioning hub at the Port of Aberdeen’s £400 million South Harbour expansion in Q3 2022, creating up to 50 new jobs.

The new hub will be located within Crathes Quay at South Harbour and deliver dismantling, recycling, and reuse services with a key focus on subsea infrastructure. The jobs boost is expected over the next 12 months and CessCon will be encouraging applications from people living locally.

The facility is being established under a Memorandum of Understanding between the Port and CessCon, which aims to establish Aberdeen as a centre of excellence and port of choice for the offshore decommissioning sector. The agreement complements and expands the decommissioning services currently offered at the Port’s North Harbour and CessCon’s Energy Park Fife Decommissioning Facility.

The South Harbour decommissioning hub will offer heavy lift zones, impermeable concrete dismantlement and processing areas, water collection and treatment facilities, material storage areas, offices, and canteen facilities.

CessCon is committed to the circular economy and the reuse and repurposing of equipment is a primary objective on all projects. The company has a minimum target on all projects of 98% reuse and recycling (by weight) of all material and has achieved over 99% reuse and recycling on several projects to date.

Port of Aberdeen has a proven track record supporting safe, cost-effective and environmentally responsible decommissioning. The South Harbour expansion significantly enhances the Port’s capability and capacity, adding 1.4km of deepwater berths, considerable heavy-lift, flexible laydown space and expansive project areas.

The Port commenced a ‘soft start’ to operations at South Harbour in July and has already welcomed a range of vessels while construction continues at pace. South Harbour will be operational by the end of October 2022 and construction will conclude in Q2 2023 when the final quay is brought into service.

The expanded Port of Aberdeen is at the heart of the North East Scotland Green Freeport bid which will create up to 32,000 high quality jobs and opportunities for those that need them most, boost GVA by £8.5 billion and transform the region into the ‘Net Zero Capital of Europe’. The bid is backed by a wide range of private sector companies, academia and parliamentarians from across the political divide.

Bob Sanguinetti, Chief Executive, Port of Aberdeen, said: “We’re delighted to announce the new decommissioning hub with CessCon Decom at South Harbour. This is one of a number of exciting opportunities that we’re pursuing to attract more decommissioning work to Aberdeen.

“Decommissioning is an important part of the UK’s energy transition and there are growing opportunities to reuse, repurpose and recycle material during the decommissioning process. We are keenly focused on this with CessCon and it complements our vision of becoming Scotland’s premier net zero port at the heart of the nation’s energy transition.”

“South Harbour is an asset of national strategic significance for the Scottish and UK Governments. Green Freeport status for North East Scotland is essential if we’re to maximise the economic benefit of the project for the local community and the national economy.”

Lee Hanlon, Chief Executive, CessCon Decom, said: “The new facility will be capable of handling turnkey decommissioning projects and the associated vessels. The substantial laydown and processing areas and water depths allow us to accommodate vessels up to 300m in length. With direct access to the North Sea, the facility is well placed to service the growing decommissioning market in parallel with our Energy Park Fife Decommissioning Facility in Methil, Fife.

“The move is the latest stage in our plans to capitalise on the huge North Sea decommissioning market. Our ongoing project to decommission, reuse and recycle Spirit Energy’s Morecambe Bay DP3 & DP4 platforms at our Energy Park Fife facility is going very well and with further projects in the pipeline in the UK, and the development of our new Anson Yard in Brunei, South East Asia, we are on the correct trajectory to achieve our growth strategy.”

Ricky Thomson, decommissioning manager at Offshore Energies UK, said: “This is a great example of UK companies demonstrating their engineering skills, powers of innovation and ability to drive transformational change in supply chain capability. This initiative underlines the UK’s growing reputation as a global leader in low carbon decommissioning.

Sam Long, CEO of Decom North Sea said: “Decom North Sea is delighted to hear such positive news from two of our members. Safe, efficient and cost-effective decommissioning which reduces environmental impact is firmly rooted in robust collaborative efforts; the MoU between CessCon and the Port of Aberdeen exemplifies this. We look forward to continuing to support them in their joint objective to establish Aberdeen as a centre of decommissioning excellence.