Official figures indicate that Scotland is on track to have the best renewables year yet with electricity generation up 13% for the first half of the year.
The statistics from the Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC) show that renewable generation topped 806 GWh for the first two quarters of 2012, 12.8% higher than the same period last year.
Installed capacity was also up to 5453 MW over the first six months of the year, 18.6% higher than 2011.
But the figures also reveal some of the problems associated with renewables. The second quarter this year actually saw a 20% drop in renewable electricity generation compared with 2011 because of lower rainfall hitting hydro plants and lower wind speeds.
Nevertheless, the figures confirm earlier indications that 2011 was a record year for renewable electricity generation in Scotland, with around 35% of demand met – well exceeding the target of 31%.
“These statistics show once again that Scotland leads the world in renewable energy generation, and that our industry goes from strength to strength,” commented Energy Secretary Fergus Ewing.
The region has set a target of generating the equivalent of 100% of its electricity demand from renewable sources by 2020.
“[Scotland has] astounding green energy potential and vast natural resources with about a quarter of Europe’s wind and tidal energy and 10% of its wave power. We have a responsibility to make sure our nation seizes this opportunity to create tens of thousands of new jobs and secure billions of pounds of investment in our economy,” added Ewing.
For further information:
UK’s onshore wind capacity hits 5 GW milestone (24-Sept)
UK wind power sets new record high of 4 GW (14-Sept)
Scottish Government gives go ahead for Stornoway wind farm (11-Sept)
Scotland beats 2011 renewable energy target (2-Apr)
27 September 2012