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CLIMATE ACTION PROGRAMME


6 March 2017

More milestones for wind energy in Scotland

According to data published this week by WeatherEnergy, wind turbines contributed 1,331,420 megawatt hours (MWh) of electricity to the National Grid in February – enough to power the equivalent of 3.9 million homes, or 162 per cent of Scottish households.

Scotland’s total electricity consumption for the period was 1,984,765 MWh.

An increase in the number of turbines and stronger winds saw 43 per cent more electricity produced by wind energy projects last month, compared to February last year.

Furthermore, wind energy provided an output equivalent to more than Scotland’s total power needs for that day on four separate occasions – generating 118 per cent, 110 per cent, 127 per cent, and 128 per cent on the 2nd, 13th, 20th and 26th respectively.

Lang Banks, Director of WWF Scotland, said: “As well as helping to power our homes and businesses, wind power supports thousands of jobs and helps Scotland to avoid over a million tonnes of polluting carbon emissions every month.”

He appealed to politicians to strengthen efforts towards the transition to a low-carbon economy, saying: “Every one of the main political parties supports the aim of generating half of all Scotland's energy needs from renewables by 2030 - including heat, electricity and transport. With this level of political backing, we call upon all of the parties to now bring forward policies that will help maximise the benefits to Scotland's economy, as we transition to a renewable future.”

Karen Robinson, of WeatherEnergy, said: “As we began to witness for the first time last year, this February has also seen a few days where the power output from wind farms exceeded the total electricity demand for an entire day. This is quite an achievement.”

She went on to say: “With the increasing occurrence of '100 per cent wind power days' there can be little doubt that Scotland is well-placed to begin the next step of increasing the role that renewables could play in cutting carbon emissions from its transport and heating sectors.”

The new figures follow the announcement earlier this year that the Scottish Government plans to increase its target for cutting emissions by 66 per cent – compared to 1990 levels – by 2032.

Scotland has already achieved its 2020 target of reducing emissions by 42 per cent, six years early.

The country has regularly reported days where wind energy has accounted for more than the country’s total power needs.

In December 2016, Scotland’s wind turbines generated more electricity than was required to meet the country’s energy demands for 4 consecutive days. 

The country is now a leading European renewable energy developer and technical expert, providing services around the world.

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