The Nuclear Free Local Authorities (NFLA) Scotland Forum publishes today a detailed report outlining the scale of UK Government cuts to renewable energy subsidies in the past year, which put at risk the ongoing low carbon revolution in Scotland. The report also highlights the important role Scottish Councils need to play, in cooperation with the Scottish Government, to continue the positive momentum of the past decade, where Scotland has led the way with dramatically increased levels of renewable energy generation year-on-year.
NFLA 12th April 2016 read more »
How will Scottish Renewables fair under the new subsidy regimes?
NFLA 12th April 2016 read more »
Scientific Alliance Scotland and the Institution of Engineers and Shipbuilders Scotland (IESIS) have submitted written evidence to the Scottish Affairs Select Committee in its inquiry into security of electricity supply in Scotland. Copies of the written submission can be found at Scientific Alliance Scotland submission and IESIS submission. The Alliance and IESIS have also been asked to provide further verbal evidence at the Committee session today (13 April) and will be represented by Professor Iain MacLeod. The Alliance report says that intermittent wind-generated power cannot guarantee security of supply and that – in the absence of coal and/or gas-fired generation in Scotland with the closure of Longannet power station new-build nuclear is the only solution to large-scale base-load despatchable power.
Scottish Energy News 13th April 2016 read more »
Critics say that years of upbeat rhetoric about Scotland becoming “the Saudi Arabia of renewables” could soon give way to a downbeat reality, with the lights going out in homes and businesses. The warning has been heard before, but it was reiterated forcefully last month by the The Institution of Engineers and Shipbuilders in Scotland (IESIS), supported by Scientific Alliance Scotland. The closure last month of Longannet, Scotland’s last coal-fired power station, is concentrating minds. In the winter just gone, electricity supplies could be topped up from south of the border via the national grid, and from Longannet. This coming winter, should generating capacity in Scotland prove insufficient, homes and businesses will have recourse only to potentially intermittent supplies from England. For this unprecedented state of affairs, blame the “wind rush”. More than 4,300 wind turbines have been built or approved in Scotland and the existing 7GW capacity of wind generation is likely to double when all those in the planning system are finally commissioned. But if the wind does not blow, all that investment is powerless. This year, on a single freezing, calm day in January, total output from nearly 12GW of UK wind turbines was just 0.07GW, an output of only 0.6 per cent of capacity, when demand was at a peak of more than 52GW. These windless, high-pressure conditions are relatively common. The SNP has meanwhile ruled out a new generation of nuclear power in Scotland, further increasing the pressure on other forms of renewables. A closing date for the Torness nuclear power station in East Lothian was extended earlier this year from 2023 to 2030, but that simply kicks the can further down the road. The daunting outlook helps to explain the growing interest among energy economists in fracking – unconventional gas and oil extraction from deep in the ground. Whether or not fracking becomes a key part of Scotland’s energy industry is now one of the most intriguing issues in this Holyrood election.
Times 13th April 2016 read more »