Is it too little, too late, for Europe's oil capital to get with the climate agenda?

While COP26 may not be yielding the radical change that many, myself included, have been hoping for, it has, without doubt, focussed the world's attention on the scarcity of our natural resources and the damage we are capable of inflicting should our consumption go on unchecked. 

Looking at the discourse from Aberdeen's perspective, a city so reliant on the oil and gas industry, can be challenging. Those in the Granite City must weigh the obvious past benefits that the fossil fuel industry has brought to their home, while also understanding the inevitable need to adapt to cleaner forms of energy. 

Indeed, the consequences of not adapting to change have been most stark during times of sharp decline in oil prices. Some 35,000 jobs were lost in Aberdeen in a single year as the dual impacts of Covid-19 and volatile oil prices hit home. 

For those from places not so reliant on the energy sector for jobs, the push to tackle climate change may seem like an idealistic pursuit, rooted in benefits to nature – but for those in places like Aberdeen, adapting to greener power is not only environmentally desirable, but an absolute human necessity. 

For Europe's oil capital, the city has long been preparing what it calls its "Energy Transition", and the changes are slowly coming. The creation of an innovative offshore wind farm and planned Hydrogen Hub, to name but two, signal that things are moving in the right direction. But while I personally remain hopeful that the vast expertise in our city can be brought to bear in innovative ways, the question still remains: Is it too little, too late?

Author - Kyle Sinclair