Wind drives Scotland RE to 46%

New UK Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) figures show renewable energy output supplied a record-breaking 46% of Scotland's gross electricity consumption last year, keeping the country on track to reach its interim target of 50% by 2015.

Wind power production that was 36% up on the previous year drove renewables in Scotland to a new high in 2013, according to the latest DECC Energy Trends report.

For the UK as a whole, renewables accounted for a 14.8% share last year, up from 11.3% in 2012.

UK renewables output grew 28% to 52.8TWh, with offshore wind contributing 10.9TWh – a 45.8% uplift.

“These figures show that renewable electricity in Scotland is going from strength to strength, showing that 2013 was a record year for renewable generation in Scotland and that 2014 looks set to be even better," states Scottish energy minister Fergus Ewing.

"Scottish renewable generation made up approximately 32% of total UK renewable generation in 2013 – showing that Scotland has some of the best natural resources."

Renewable energy, says Ewing, is "helping keep the lights on across these islands at a time when [electricity regulator] Ofgem [is] warning of the ever tightening gap between peak electricity demand and electricity supply".

The Scottish government is targeting sourcing 100% of electricity consumption from renewable sources by 2020.

Figures from Holyrood indicate the renewable energy industries invested £13.1bn and created over 9,000 jobs between January 2010 and April 2013  –  said by Ewing to boost Scotland's prospects should it secede from the UK after an independence referendum in September.

“Independence will allow Scotland to pursue the opportunity to maximise the benefits from our energy wealth, including our potential for further developments in renewable energy," claimed Ewing.