Scottish Energy Minister defends £300m Scots wind power ‘rip-off racket’

The Scot-Govt has defended what the GMB trade union yesterday described as a £300 million wind-power ‘rip-off racket’ centred in Scotland.

GMB, the energy workers’ union, has called for subsidies on renewable energy to paid for through general taxation alongside an investigation into a bonkers wind power ‘rip off racket’ centred in Scotland.

It follows revelations that since 2010, energy bill payers have paid £328 million to wind farm owners for not generating any energy – most of them in Scotland.

However, Scottish Energy Minister Paul Wheelhouse, MSP, said that renewable energy brought jobs, boosted the economy and contributed to Scotland’s ambitious climate change targets.

He added: “Onshore wind is now our lowest-cost renewable technology and is now far cheaper than nuclear power and can make a very strong contribution to a balanced energy mix while also helping keep prices down for consumers.

“We have been very clear with the UK Government that its failure to support routes to market for new onshore wind and islands wind projects, to give them price stability, has negative consequences.

As first reported in Scottish Energy News 24 Aug 2017
As first reported in Scottish Energy News 24 Aug 2017
Paul Wheelhouse, MSP
Paul Wheelhouse, MSP

“Constraint payments are just one tool currently used by the National Grid to manage transmission.

“They reflect congestion on parts of the electricity network where, in some situations, because the grid capacity has not yet caught up with electricity generation, the lowest cost and most efficient option in the short-term is to pay generators to increase or reduce their output.

“Increasing grid capacity and developing energy storage solutions – such as more pumped hydro power capacity – would dramatically reduce the need for these payments, and we have a major programme of grid investment worth billions of pounds already underway in Scotland.”

Meanwhile, the Scot-Govt is to provide £20 million to help universities reduce greenhouse gas emissions by up to 20%.

25 Aug 2017

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