Big jump in generation of renewable electricity is welcomed
The Scottish Government has been urged to use its success in one sphere of renewable energy provision as a springboard to a further transition to a green economy.
It has been announced that Scotland has reached a record high in renewable elecrticity generation, up by 13% compared to the same period last year.
There was also a 16% increase in capacity, and more than half of all gross electricity consumption in Scotland continues to come from renewables.
Environmental charity WWF Scotland welcomed these positive moves – but said attention must now be given to better use of renewable electricity in the heat and transport sectors.
Dr Sam Gardner, acting director of WWF Scotland, said: “It’s fantastic news that Scotland’s renewable electricity generation is at an all-time high and re-affirms the vital role it plays in powering the country.
“The renewable electricity sector continues to play a vital role at the heart of Scotland’s economy, delivering jobs and attracting investment. If we are to replicate these benefits in the wider economy the energy strategy from the Scottish Government should make clear the steps it plans to take to remove fossil fuels from the heat and transport sectors.
“A transformation in how we heat our homes and offices, how we travel to work and school, and how we power our industries will generate many social and economic benefits."
Research shows it is possible for Scotland to generate more than half of its energy from renewables by 2030, however, the charity says the Scottish Government will need to set out clear policies if it is to achieve this.
The Scottish Government's business minister Paul Wheelhouse said: “It’s great to hear renewable electricity generation in Scotland has reached a new record high.
“Renewable energy helps us reduce greenhouse gases and underpins our work to fight climate change. But it’s important to remember the renewable electricity sector also supports 26,000 jobs and has a turnover of £5 billion which is set to grow further as new capacity comes on-stream."