According to new statistics released by the World Wildlife Fund Scotland, Scottish renewable energy had a “bumper month” in October, 2014, with wind power alone generating an estimated 982,842 MWh of electricity. This is enough clean energy to power around 3,045,000 homes, and equates to 126 percent of the electricity needs of Scottish households. Solar power and hot water generation also performed well, despite the country’s reputation for grey and misty weather.
WWF Scotland sourced its figures from WeatherEnergy. In addition to the astounding statistics for Scottish wind power, they found that across the U.K. as a whole, wind provided 2,496,842 MWh of electricity, or enough to meet the needs of 7,736,000 U.K. households, or 28 percent. On a city-by-city basis in Scotland, solar PV produced between 30 and 46 percent of household energy needs, depending upon the location. For example, Glasgow produced 121.6 kWh of electricity, or 37 percent of household electricity needs, while Edinburgh produced 150.9 kWh, or 46 percent of its needs.
Solar hot water production also scored remarkably well, and the WWF reports: “For those homes fitted with solar hot water panels, there was enough sunshine to meet an estimated 41% of the hot water needs of an average home in Edinburgh, 31% in Inverness, 30% in Glasgow, and 27% in Aberdeen.” WWF Scotland’s director Lang Banks noted, “Summer may be a distant memory, but for the tens of thousands of Scottish households that have installed solar panels to generate electricity or heat water, a third or more of their needs were met from the sun this October, helping reduce their reliance on coal, gas, or even oil.”
Scotland’s renewable energy capacity is increasing rapidly and currently provides around 46 percent of the country’s energy needs. Government statistics report that in March, 2014, the country had 6.8 gigawatts of installed renewable electricity generation capacity, with a further 6.5 gigawatts of capacity either under construction or approved. Most of the pending capacity is expected to come from onshore wind generation. With a further 7.2 gigawatts’ worth of projects in the planning stages, future renewable energy generation capacity is expected to be 20.5 gigawatts. The Scottish government is aiming for renewables to supply 100 percent of gross annual energy consumption by 2020, with an interim target of 50 percent by 2015.
Via Think Progress