Renewables output jumps 45% in single year

New figures showing that Scotland’s renewable energy output in the first quarter of 2012 was 45.5% up on the same period last year has been hailed as a sign Scotland is on course to meet its ambitious energy targets.

The first quarter of 2012 saw 4,950 gigawatt hours (GWh) generated in Scotland from renewables, up by 1,435 from the same quarter last year. Figures for the whole of 2011 show that 13,735 GWh were generated from renewables, meaning that around 35% of Scotland’s electricity demands were met from renewables last year.

That 35% figure comfortably beats the Scottish Government’s interim target of generating 31% of Scottish demand from renewables by 2011 and puts Scotland well on course to providing the equivalent of 100% of electricity demand by 2020.

Commenting SNP MSP Angus MacDonald who sits on the Economy, Energy and Tourism Committee said:

“These latest figures show that the renewables sector is going from strength to strength and is rapidly increasing the amount of electricity it provides homes and businesses.

“Last year saw the highest ever output from renewable energy in Scotland, but these figures reveal we are already building substantially on that level.

“The energy potential Scotland has from renewables is incredible and the sector already employs 11,000 people. That figure will only grow as more and more investments are made and Scotland moves towards meeting its ambitious renewable energy targets.

“The renewables sector offers us the opportunity to reindustrialise Scotland and harness the incredible rewards that our clean energy potential offers us. We are on course to meet our goals and that can only be good news for communities across Scotland.”