SNP First Minister wants Scotland to be (subsidy) free in wind power sector

Nicola Sturgeon on a recent visit to Scotland's largest wind farm.
Nicola Sturgeon on a recent Spring visit to Scotland’s largest wind farm at Whitelee, near Glasgow.

A total of 7,570 visitors attended the All-Energy two-day conference in Glasgow last week – and the organisers have already confirmed they’ll be holding the 2018 event in the city next year.

A spokesman for organisers Reed Exhibitions, commented: “The hall was packed, all 617 seats taken and a queue formed outside the door waiting to come in as others left.

“Nearly 50% of visitors attended at least one conference session, and all conference rooms were very busy.

“This year saw an increasing number of panel discussions and the introduction of the Atlantis Resources’ sponsored All-Energy

Marine Renewable Energy Investment Challenge which saw one company – Tidetec of Norway – walk away with £10,000-worth of professional advice to help them find funding and successfully reach commercial status for their tidal lagoon ‘two-way hydropower’ technology”

Meanwhile, Nicola Sturgeon, Scottish First Minister, commented: “We want renewable energy sources to play the major role in meeting Scotland’s energy needs. 

“At the moment, renewables generate almost 54% of Scotland’s electricity demand. In terms of our overall energy consumption  – for electricity, heat and transport – around 15% is currently met by renewables. It’s important to point out that that figure has more than doubled since 2009.

“But we want renewable sources to meet the equivalent of 50% of Scotland’s total energy needs by 2030 – this reflects the immense confidence we have in Scotland’s renewables sector, and it reflects our strengths across the range of different technologies.       

“Now our primary source of renewable electricity is onshore wind. In fact, our current and consented onshore capacity is enough to power the needs of Scottish households twice over. 

“That’s why we’re so determined to ensure that onshore wind has a viable route to market. And as part of that, we’ve called for  Scotland to become the first area in the UK to host a subsidy-free onshore wind farm. 

“It’s a challenge to the industry – but it’s also an indication of our commitment to securing the future of onshore wind in Scotland.

“We’re determined to build a modern, secure energy system that creates jobs and strengthens our economy.  And we want our energy sector to be a world leader across all forms of energy.

“The truth is, we have all of the raw materials here in Scotland that we need to achieve those ambitions. 

“Per head of population, we’re one of the most energy-rich nations in Europe. We’ve retained our traditional strengths in construction, manufacturing and engineering. And, of course, with five universities ranked among the top 200 in the world, we also boast an outstanding science and research base.         

“But for all those advantages, we know, and we have a real recognition, that there’s nothing inevitable about Scotland realising our energy potential. It’s the decisions we make now – and the direction we take – that will determine whether we use these raw materials to fulfil and realise that ambition.”

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