Renewable energy generation figures rise in Scotland

Scotland’s energy minister Fergus Ewing has welcomed new figures that show output from renewables in the first quarter of 2012 increased by 45.5 per cent on the same period the year before.

Provisional figures from the Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC) show that renewable electricity generation in Scotland was 4,590GWh in the first quarter of 2012, up 1,435GWh on the first quarter of 2011.

According to a statement, the provisional figures also show an increase of 9.8 per cent or 435MWin installed renewables electricity capacity in Scotland in the first quarter of 2012 compared to the first quarter of 2011.

DECC also today issued revised statistics for 2011 that show renewable electricity generation in Scotland was 13,735GWh in 2011, up 44.3 per cent on 2010, and up 97.3 per cent on 2006.

The revised 2011 figures continue to show good progress towards the Scottish government’s 2020 target of the equivalent of 100 per cent of electricity demand coming from renewables.

Assuming gross consumption in 2011 was similar to 2010, that means around 35 per cent of Scotland’s electricity needs came from renewables in 2011, beating the Scottish government’s interim target of 31 per cent.

Energy minister Fergus Ewing said: ‘Projects representing £750m of investment were switched on in 2011, with an investment pipeline of £46bn.

‘Industry figures show 11,000 people are employed in renewables in Scotland already, a figure that is set to grow. And since the turn of the year, we have seen Gamesa invest in Leith creating around 800 new jobs, the Green Investment Bank being headquartered in Edinburgh and Samsung Heavy Industries announcing it will base its £100m European offshore wind project in Methil, creating up to 500 jobs.’