WORK is now under way on an Old Kilpatrick project that is set to bring 1,000 new jobs to the area.

The Scottish Marine Technology Park (SMTP) is due to be operational by 2024 and will become the only marine technology park in Europe.

Last week, Malin Group’s staff and contractors were on site to begin the early stages of the remediation.

The news comes after Derek Mackay, Scottish finance secretary, revealed the project was part of his “Clyde Mission” – a plan to boost the river’s traditional strengths in shipping and marine engineering, while aiming to breathe life into adjacent derelict land.

John MacSween, Malin managing director, said: “We are excited about the potential that the SMPT offers Scotland’s marine industry, and it was encouraging to see diggers on site as the work to develop it gets under way.

“The assumption with industry, especially the type of heavy industry traditionally associated with the Clyde, is that it has a negative impact on the environment.

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“The marine technology park marks a departure in that respect. Environmental remediation and protection are a major consideration for us and Malin’s development of the site will have a positive environmental impact.

“The measures we are taking will offer ongoing environmental protection for the River Clyde and provide long term benefits for the river, fish and other marine species.”

A team of experts including microbiologists from the University of Strathclyde will work closely with West Dunbartonshire Council and SEPA, using pioneering Bioremediation techniques to responsibly degrade the oil contamination at the site.

Ecologists are also advising on measures to prevent any harm to wildlife before work activities commence.

Remediation of fossil fuel sites is likely to become more prevalent in the years to come as the sector is phased out to address and mitigate the climate emergency.

The park is said to become a centre of excellence for marine engineering and complex marine manufacturing, and will include a large fabrication facility, a deep-water jetty, with a 1,100-tonne ship hoist as well as other modern amenities.