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Blueprint for renewables revolution

30/06/2011

An action plan to drive forward Scotland's renewables revolution, and to meet this Government's world-leading green energy targets, was launched today by Energy Minister Fergus Ewing

The Renewables Routemap outlines the necessary steps needed to capitalise on the enormous economic potential of Scotland's green energy capacity and to meet ambitious targets, including supplying 100 per cent of electricity demand equivalent from renewables by 2020.

The plan sets new targets to meet 30 per cent of overall energy demand from renewables by 2020, and to deliver 500 MW of community and locally-owned renewable energy by 2020. The plan outlines a commitment to develop strategies for microgeneration and agri-renewables, and pledges to work with investors to create a Green Equity Fund to support community renewable projects.

The Routemap builds on the 2009 Scottish Renewables Action Plan and identifies actions required to help Scotland meet the major challenges ahead including: costs and access to finance, grid capacity and charges, skills, innovation, supply chain and infrastructure.

The plan reinforces the need for the Scottish Government, UK Government and energy industry to continue to work together, urgently, to ensure Scotland retains its competitive advantage in renewables and secures inward investment and jobs.

Mr Ewing also announced plans to establish a Scottish Renewables Advisory Themed Group, to provide expert advice from industry and other stakeholders on how to achieve Scotland's full renewable energy potential. The group will be co-chaired by the Energy Minister and Niall Stuart, Chief Executive of Scottish Renewables.

Energy Minister Fergus Ewing said:

"The Renewable Routemap sets out the significant steps required to support this Government's ambition to make Scotland a European powerhouse of clean green energy. It sets out the key actions needed to seize the opportunity for Scotland to research and develop, design, construct and service the technologies that will power the 21st century.

"Scotland has established a global reputation for excellence in innovation in renewables and this Routemap acts as a blueprint to capitalise on the economic and social potential of our nation's rich natural resources.

"Our target of generating 100 per cent of Scotland's electricity needs from renewables by 2020, is one of the most ambitious in the world. The Routemap also outlines new goals of achieving 30 per cent of overall energy demand from renewables by 2020, and 500 MW community and locally-owned renewable energy by 2020 - reflecting our commitment to creating a low carbon Scotland.

"The plan also reinforces the importance of securing an adequate connection with EU neighbours to ensure that UK demand is not a limiting factor on the ability for Scottish generators to dispatch and export their electricity, and contribute to Scotland's future economic success.

"A new Renewables Advisory Themed Group will be established, bringing together industry leaders to take forward the actions in the Routemap and help us achieve our targets.

"More than 40,000 jobs could be created in this rapidly expanding industry and some of the biggest names in energy have already chosen to expand their operations in Scotland, including Mitsubishi Power Systems, Gamesa and Dossan Babcock. It is essential we continue to move quickly to develop the necessary infrastructure and skills required to attract more international investment and green energy jobs to our communities.

"Renewable energy provides perhaps Scotland's greatest economic and environmental opportunity this century. Our new Routemap sets out what we need to do collectively to write the next chapter in Scotland's renewable energy story."