The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Scotland has found that Scotland produced enough wind energy to power households from Harrogate to the Outer Hebrides between January and June. Enough clean power was generated from wind projects to meet the needs of 4.47 million homes during that period. It equates to nearly two times the number of Scottish homes, reflecting the scope and strength that clean energy generation now represents in Scotland.
WWF spokesperson Robin Parker said that the figures were 'amazing' and showed how the country was benefiting from a clean energy revolution. He said that the gains from clean power were benefiting the UK as a whole as well as the climate, with Scotland able to produce enough clean energy to meet its own domestic needs and to export to England as well.
He added that it was high time for the UK government to provide Scotland's onshore wind industries with a route to public market.
The figures rapidly followed Britain's longest ever period without requiring any coal power. Scottish Power has now also become the first energy firm to drop fossil fuels entirely for its power production, after selling off its hydro and gas stations to Drax and focusing its operation entirely on wind energy. It is planning to invest more than £5 billion in the next four years to boost its renewable capacity by 200%.
However, there are concerns that the UK is missing an opportunity to build a sufficient supply chain and missing out on home-based skilled jobs as a result. Nicola Sturgeon has said that more needs to be done to generate Scottish jobs in clean energy after the number of jobs in onshore wind dropped by 400 between 2014 and 2017.