The Scottish government is due to publish its climate and energy plans in the next week. Ahead of that, BBC Scotland has been looking at two radical schemes proposed by environmental groups. The second is a district heating scheme used in Norway. For most of us, heat is something generated within the confines of the homes we occupy; coal fires, gas-powered boilers, oil, electric storage units. But in the town of Drammen in Norway it is a shared commodity, created off-site and piped into homes. District heating is considered to be much more efficient – and therefore more environmentally friendly – than all of the above. And if you can create that heat with less reliance on fossil fuels, the carbon footprint is reduced even further. In Scotland, heat accounts for more than half our energy use and so decarbonising it will have to become a priority if climate change targets are to be met. The irony is that while district heating is not in widespread use here, the system in Drammen was installed by a Scottish firm. Glasgow-based Star Renewable Energy installed the heat pumps in 2010/11.
BBC 18th Jan 2017 read more »
Scotland must set tough new energy goals that are in harmony with nature in its forthcoming energy plan, according to environmentalists. Climate change is hailed as the single biggest threat to people and nature worldwide. In an effort to slow the global rise in temperature, Scotland has set a world-leading goal to slash greenhouse gas emissions by 80 per cent by 2050. Decarbonising the energy system is a key element in achieving the challenge. The goal is for the ‘equivalent’ of 100 per cent of domestic electricity to come from renewable sources. Scotland has already reached its 2020 interim target of 50 per cent, with the latest figures showing renewables met 59.4 per cent of electricity demand in 2015. But there is currently no target for heat, transport and power generation. Now, with publication of the draft energy strategy expected next week, campaigners say the bar should be raised to include all power needs. They are calling for a tough new target to be set, requiring half of all energy to come from renewable s by 2030.
Scotsman 17th Jan 2017 read more »