By Paul Homewood
Claire Perry has been up in Scotland, lauding the “success” of the renewable energy sector there:
- Renewable energy adding further security to our energy supplies and moving away from reliance on fossils fuels
- Minister meets Scottish energy pioneers who have moved away from dirty fuels of the industrial revolution into clean green energy
The growing success of the renewable industry in meeting the UK’s climate targets will be praised today by Energy and Clean Growth Minister Claire Perry in a keynote speech to the All-Energy conference in Glasgow today (3 May 2018).
The renewable industry in Scotland is delivering an impressive 25% of the UK’s total renewable generation capacity. The Minister will also point to the huge potential for Scottish enterprise in delivering clean growth as part if the government’s modern Industrial Strategy Clean Growth Grand Challenge – with 24,000 people already working in the Low Carbon sector.
Energy and Clean Growth Minister Claire Perry will say:
From James Watt’s steam engine kicking off the industrial revolution and the opening of the first coal mine, through to offshore wind and marine energy powering homes and businesses in the present day, Scotland has always been at the cutting edge of progress.
The renewables industry has a central role in our modern Industrial Strategy with the global shift towards clean growth providing one of the greatest economic opportunities of our time.
Scotland is home to a future potential of over 4GW of offshore wind across 10 offshore wind farms, with the opportunity to power millions of homes. The world’s first floating offshore windfarm has been developed in Scotland, at Hywind in Aberdeenshire.
Renewable contributions to the UK energy supply have soared in recent months thanks to long term government investment with electricity from clean wind power increasing by 43% between December 2017 and February 2018.
Since 1990, the UK has cut its emissions by over 40% while growing the economy by more than two thirds.
Energy consumers are benefiting too as prices for producing clean energy such as offshore wind continue to drop. Moray East Windfarm in Scotland will deliver power at £57.50 per megawatt hour – a fall of more than half since 2015. The Beatrice offshore wind project is also one of Scotland’s largest private infrastructure projects and will be one of the world’s largest windfarms once it is completed.
Unsurprisingly, she does not tell us the real story:
Wind power output amounted to 16.8 TWh last year in Scotland, most of which is onshore. Subsidies for this, via the Renewable Obligation system cost £816 million.
This equates to £154 for every man, woman and child in Scotland, or would do if it was not for the fact that the bill is shared out amongst everybody in the UK.
On top of this come the costs for building hundreds of miles of transmission cables, to carry electricity from remote Highland areas to where it is actually needed. Total costs are unknown, but will most certainly run into billions. In 2011, for instance, the BBC reported that the cost of the Beauly Denny power line alone was £600 million.
Then there is the cost of constraint payments to wind farm owners, when there is too much wind power on the system.
Despite these massive costs and subsidies, generation in Scotland has actually been falling in recent years. In fact, generation is now at its lowest level since at least 2004, when BEIS records begin.
This is largely because of the closure of Longannet’s coal power station in 2016, with the direct loss of 300 jobs, and undoubtedly many more indirectly.
All in all, not much of a success story is it, Claire?
via NOT A LOT OF PEOPLE KNOW THAT
May 6, 2018 at 04:30AM