A single-minded focus on renewables creating conditions similar to “those that generated Silicon Valley” is among drastic measures suggested by an expert group seeking to transform the sluggish Scottish economy. The study by Oxford Economics addresses issues that have dogged the economy for decades, including low productivity, a poor birth rate for businesses and lack of scaling-up success. Despite the reluctance of the oil and gas workforce to move to renewables, which tends to be lower paid, the sector has the potential to expand and win exports, the report says, because Scotland has an advantage from its large- scale tidal, wave and wind sources.
Times 7th April 2021 read more »
RENEWABLE energy holds the key to powering Scotland’s future and our country is so richly blessed with prized natural resources that it is well-placed to become a key player in the sector. Unless, of course, our third North Sea bonanza in a row is mishandled by Westminster as our oil and gas and fishing sectors have been. Scotland only narrowly missed out on generating the equivalent of 100% of its electricity demand from renewables in 2020. The latest figures show it reached 97.4% from renewable sources. That’s a huge stride forward in just a decade. When this target was set in 2011 renewable technologies generated just 37% of national demand. Industry body Scottish Renewables says output has tripled in the last 10 years, with enough power being produced from renewables to provide for the equivalent of seven million households. In 2019, Scotland met 90.1% of its equivalent electricity consumption from renewables, according to Scottish Government figures. That was 53.2% better than the UK average. Exports of renewable electricity are also higher than they’ve ever been. We exported £745 million worth of electricity in 2019 as wind power increasingly became what some experts called “the country’s second North Sea Oil”. More than 17,000-gigawatt hours were transmitted to England and Wales that year, the highest total ever recorded.
The National 6th April 2021 read more »