BP is delaying investment in a new £500m UK carbon capture power plant at Peterhead.
The plan for Peterhead could create 1,000 jobs
The energy company said it was waiting on an announcement on whether the green energy plant at Peterhead Power Station would get government support.
About 1,000 jobs would be expected to be created if the project was ultimately given the go-ahead.
BP said the delay would knock the completion date for the scheme back by at least a year until after 2010.
Banff and Buchan MP Alex Salmond, the SNP leader, has called on the government to make a quick decision.
Mr Salmond said: "The Peterhead project has a two year lead over any other proposal in the UK, and a full year lead over anything else in the world.
"This technology is potentially planet saving as well as world leading.
"What on earth can be the sense in these bureaucratic delays when the government claims that global warming is their overwhelming priority."
Gordon Brown told MPs in his pre-Budget report that carbon capture was a possibility for the future.
The proposal would see the world's first industrial-scale hydrogen power scheme based in the Aberdeenshire town.
It would generate 'carbon-free' electricity from hydrogen, reducing greenhouse gas emissions by capturing carbon dioxide and safely storing it.
Energy firms have teamed up to investigate the feasibility of the carbon capture and storage (CCS) scheme.
The plan has won praise from energy experts, environmental campaigners and politicians alike for pointing the way forward.