Renewable power output continues to rise
Record levels of electricity generation from renewable sources in Scotland have been welcomed.
The figures for the first quarter of 2019 from the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) show generation of 8877 gigawatt hours – enough to power around 88 per cent of Scottish households for a year.
This is an increase in generation of 17 per cent on the same quarter in 2018.
Claire Mack, chief executive of industry body Scottish Renewables, said: “This fantastic new figure shows how Scotland’s remarkable renewable energy resource is being harnessed by technologies like wind, hydro, biomass, solar, marine energy and more, and is continuing to deliver environmental and economic benefits across Scotland.
“Renewables are now producing more of our electricity than ever before, reducing the carbon emissions which cause climate change and driving jobs and investment across the country.
“Scotland’s renewable energy industry employs 17,700 people, and with the right support from government can continue to deliver enormous economic benefits as we transition to a low-carbon energy system and strive to achieve net-zero emissions by 2045.”
Renewable electricity capacity also grew, rising 9.1 per cent from 10.4 gigawatts in March 2018 to 11.3GW in March 2019.
Electricity exports were also at their highest since the end of 2017, with a net 4543GWh exported – equivalent to powering more than 1.1 million households for a year.
Scotland’s Energy Minister Paul Wheelhouse said: “These figures show Scotland’s renewable energy sector continues to go from strength to strength. Last year, we were able to meet the equivalent of almost 74 per cent of our electricity demand from renewable sources, and the first quarter in 2019 shows that positive trend continues.
“We are seeing the growing importance of offshore wind, with capacity and generation both continuing to rise – with further projects under construction. I am delighted that installed capacity grew by 9.1 per cent to reach a record 11.3GW by March this year.”