Scotland will attempt to cut carbon emissions from its electricity generation by four-fifths underlining a huge market for offshore wind beyond 2020
The Scottish First Minister, Alex Salmond, announced the new target while speaking at the Scottish Renewables-Scottish Enterprise Offshore Wind & Supply Chain Conference, Aberdeen. In the same speech he also announced the signing of a new Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) between the Highland & Islands Enterprise (HIE) and four key ports in the region in order to develop the Scottish offshore wind sector. The partnership are hoping to attract investment of around £100 million for the Highlands.
A target of 50g carbon per kWh by 2030 has been outlined within Scotland’s revised Offshore Wind Route Map, published today. This is in line with independent advice from the UK Committee on Climate Change and also with the Scottish government’s draft second report on proposals and policies (RPP2) to meet emissions targets.
“We face a global imperative to tackle climate change and how we power our economies is a key part of that” said Mr Salmond. “Offshore wind has a strong, vibrant future, with plans to install up to 10 GW of capacity in Scottish waters over the next decade. More sites are being scoped for deployment in the 2020s – alongside commercial wave and tidal generation – as grid and interconnection upgrades and storage are further developed.”
The First Minister went on to claim that coalition government ministers mixed messages on energy policy along with continuing uncertainty around Electricity Market Reform, including a lack of a decarbonisation target, is undermining confidence and threatening investment by the supply chain. In response, Mr Salmond said, the Scottish government is setting a specific target to guide Scotland’s overall policy approach.
“We will now consult with stakeholders on the implementation of this ambitious target” Mr Salmond added. “I join the industry, again, in urging Westminster to follow suit. With an unrivalled wind, wave and tidal resource, huge carbon storage capacity off our coast and world-class offshore engineering and innovation expertise, Scotland continues to provide the best natural and economic environment for low carbon energy investment. We will also continue to urge the UK Government to ensure its industrial strategy for offshore wind gives the right level of support to the supply chain about further deployment plans as costs reduce and offshore wind becomes increasingly competitive as a source of low carbon electricity.”
Mr Salmond also revealed that HIE had signed four joint-working agreements with Port of Ardersier, Kishorn Port Limited and Cromarty Firth Port Authority and Global Energy Nigg which will support owners and operators to secure consents, market opportunities, attract investments and enable further development.
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