Scotland has exceeded its target to produce 50 per cent of its electricity from renewables by 2015 – with more than two-thirds of Scotland’s electricity needs met from renewable sources.
Scotland was the fourth largest green energy consumer in the whole of the European Union in 2016 – with 54 per cent of our electricity provided by renewables, over twice as much as the average for England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
We will now go further. By 2020, we aim for the equivalent of 100 per cent of our electricity needs to be met by renewable sources.
And by 2030 we will aim for the equivalent of 50 per cent of the energy for Scotland’s heat, transport and electricity consumption to be supplied from renewable sources.
To ensure we continue to lead the way, we are establishing a a £60 million Low Carbon Innovation Fund, to provide dedicated support for renewable and low carbon infrastructure.
To encourage innovation in the offshore wind sector, particularly to reduce costs, £2 million of Scottish Government funding was announced in June 2018.
Scotland is already home to the world’s first large-scale tidal energy farm, a project that has been backed with £23 million Scottish Government funding.
In 2017 hydro power electricity generation increased by nine per cent. To support the hydro sector to grow further, we have introduced a new 60 per cent business rates relief for hydro energy generation properties.
We’re supporting community ownership of renewables too. In 2011 we set a target for 500 MW of electricity capacity to be in local and community ownership by 2020. We have now surpassed that target by a third and will now aim for 1 GW of community and locally owned energy by 2020.