RSPB Scotland has welcomed today’s publication of the new Scottish Energy Strategy by the Scottish Government, which sets out the Government’s vision for the future energy system in Scotland, to 2050.
The Strategy sets a new 2030 ‘all-energy’ target for the equivalent of 50% of Scotland’s heat, transport and electricity consumption to be supplied from renewable sources, marking the beginning of a Government approach to energy that seeks to better integrate the whole energy system as well as delivering much greater levels of energy efficiency as a strategic priority.
RSPB Scotland strongly supports well-sited renewable energy as part of our transition to a low carbon economy, and in 2016 published peer-reviewed research which demonstrated significant potential to grow renewable energy in Scotland in harmony with nature. This analysis showed the importance of established technologies like onshore wind and solar, and vast potential to unlock significant ‘green growth’ from technologies like floating wind in the longer term, through moving development into deeper waters away from sensitive wildlife sites, and maximising the impact of renewables through technologies like energy storage and ramped up efforts to improve energy efficiency. Decarbonisation of heat and transport will be crucial to meeting climate targets in the future, so an all energy target is particularly important to stimulating more progress in these sectors.
Alexa Morrison, Senior Policy Officer at RSPB Scotland said:
“RSPB Scotland’s vision is for Scotland to decarbonise its energy system in harmony with nature, and for Scotland to be a global leader in demonstrating how renewable energy can grow and thrive without jeopardising our most special places for wildlife.
“We welcome today’s publication of the new Scottish Energy Strategy, in particular the new target for 50% of energy to come from renewables by 2030, and call on Scottish Government and industry to work together to deliver these important targets whilst at the same time protecting the special places for wildlife we hold dear, and in line with our national and international commitments to reverse biodiversity declines. We know from evidence and experience that we can deliver low carbon energy without sacrificing nature, and we are committed to working to support this positive vision for Scotland.”