Renewable Energy Development In Scotland Environmental Sciences Essay
The Scottish Government, in cooperation with the Forum for Renewable Energy Development in Scotland (FREDS), is consulting on a framework for the development and deployment of renewable energy in Scotland. This complements proposals in the parallel consultation document on a Renewables Energy Strategy issued in June by the UK Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (BERR). The Scottish Government intends that its proposed framework should contribute to the Scottish element of the UK National Action Plan for renewable energy if and when the proposed EU directive on renewable energy comes into force. The Scottish Government and FREDS would welcome discussion of and comments on the proposals in this document by 1 December 2008 - subject to that feedback, we plan to prepare and publish a final Framework by early 2009.
Promoting the development and deployment of renewable energy is a key aspect of meeting the Scottish Government's purpose of promoting sustainable economic growth in Scotland. The Scottish Government's Economic Strategy identifies energy as a priority sector of the economy with renewable energy development contributing both to commitments to reduce carbon emissions and to promoting growth. Relevant indicators are included in the Government's performance framework and are being supported by local government too. These are: working towards an emissions reduction target of 80% by 2050; and a target that 50% of Scottish gross electricity consumption should come from renewable generation in Scotland by 2020, with 31% by 2011.
Renewable energy is not the only means by which to reduce carbon emissions from energy generation and use. For example, we will continue to need thermal generation and must reduce carbon emissions from coal and gas generation too. But these are not either/or choices - we are aiming both a reduction in carbon emissions and for the growth benefit to be gained from achieving a leading edge in new technologies. However, we will, in seeking to promote renewable energy, take into account the benefits and costs of different technologies both in relation to prospects for growth and for carbon reductions.
Scotland is on track to meet its target of meeting 50% of gross electricity consumption from renewable generation. The most recent electricity statistics (for 2006) indicate that renewable generation was equivalent to 16.3% of Scottish gross electricity consumption. The Scottish Government has recognised, however, that we need to make progress on renewable energy more generally, i.e. taking into account heat and transport as well as electricity. We believe that a challenging, necessary and achievable objective is 20% renewable energy by 2020. This aligns with the EU target but goes higher than the 15% likely to be required of the UK as a whole. It is also important to stress that this is in no sense a cap but rather an interim stage towards our more long term vision for renewable energy in Scotland, where we see Scotland playing a leading role in conjunction with European partners in developing and supplying renewable energy to a wider market.
The challenge of reducing carbon emissions will be made easier if we can reduce energy consumption. This document provides a summary of current actions for context but is not consulting on this issue. We propose to issue an Action Plan on Energy Efficiency and
Micro-generation in the near future.
This document seeks views on the Scottish Government's proposed 20% target. It sets out what we are doing and what more we need to do to achieve this target. Meeting it will require action by a range of partners - industry, government and its agencies, researchers and more. We also need to work effectively in a UK and EU context. The latter will be assisted by the Scottish European Green Energy Centre which will start work later this year.
These are challenging targets; we want to work in meaningful partnership with all stakeholders to achieve our objectives. Your responses will help the Scottish Government, working with FREDS, to draw up a Framework which can be the agenda for our combined efforts.
Comments should be sent by 1 December 2008 to
Robin Allison Renewable Policy Team Scottish Government 2nd Floor, Meridian Court 5 Cadogan Street Glasgow, G2 6AT
Tel: 0141 242 5819
Email: robin.allison@scotland,gsi.gov.uk 2. Why renewable energy?
Renewable energy is identified as a priority in the Strategy for Economic Development since it offers significant potential for helping deliver the Scottish Government's key purpose of sustainable economic growth.
The Scottish Government's proposals for an ambitious Scottish Climate Change Bill include setting a challenging statutory target of reducing Scotland's emissions by 80% by 2050.
The Scottish Government has identified support for the EU Energy Policy for Europe as one if its 5 main priority areas under its European Action Plan.
The Scottish Government is committed to work towards the achievement of 20% of total Scottish energy use coming from renewable sources by 2020, in line with the overall EU approach.
There is opportunity to harness considerable natural resources and leverage considerable comparative advantage from those resources and the strengths of our Academic and Engineering base.
2.1. Economic development
The Scottish Government has set out in its Strategy for Economic Development (the Government Economic Strategy) its key purpose:
to focus the Government and public services on creating a more successful country, with opportunities for all of Scotland to flourish, through increasing sustainable economic growth.
Energy is identified in this strategy as a priority sector. Within this renewable energy offers opportunities for growth, while also contributing to carbon emissions. 0ur natural resources, research base and wider energy strengths which give opportunities for transfer of technology and expertise, together provide competitive advantage. We have the opportunity to:
provide reliable, locally produced sustainable sources of energy;
generate greater and more widely shared employment;
create more highly skilled and better paid jobs;
foster a self-sustaining and ambitious climate of entrepreneurial advance;
encourage economic activity and investment across Scotland, thereby sharing the benefits of growth;
bring a culture of confidence and personal empowerment to Scotland; and
secure a high quality environment today and a sustainable legacy for future generations.
Amount of Electricity Generation from Renewable Sources as Proportion of Whole Demand (2006)
-4.7% -1.0% v0.7%
Wind, Wave and Solar
2.1.3. Scotland's oil and gas industry demonstrates how we can prosper, with a cluster of supply-chain companies developed at peak periods of production now evolving into a critical mass of high-value, internationally-orientated activities. Scotland has the opportunity, in marine and offshore energy in particular, to develop a similar economic strength. Scotland has an opportunity, in marine and offshore energy in particular, to develop clear economic benefits at home as well as pushing forward the boundaries of research with a world-wide impact and benefit. In addition to a range of support available for renewable energy development, the Scottish Government has announced the £10 million Saltire Prize, the largest single innovation prize in the world. The Saltire Prize will be open to entrants from across the world, will focus on marine renewable energy and will raise Scotland's profile as a leader in innovation and in renewable energy in particular. The Saltire Prize will make Scotland a world leader in the development of marine renewable technology. The challenge for the Saltire Prize will be announced in December 2008.
The Saltire Prize was announced by First Minister Alex Salmond in Washington DC in April 2008.
Simply put, innovation prizes are successful when people want to win them. We want the Saltire Prize to achieve the profile that will engender the kind of return on investment that makes innovation prizes successful .
The key elements of the Saltire Prize are:
capturing imaginations: challenge that can inspire a revolution in green energy
global challenge: high profile prize open to teams from across the world
relevant to Scotland: relevant to area in which Scotland has strong natural resource and can be demonstrated in Scotland
capitalises on Scotland's expertise: challenge will reflect area in which Scotland has strong technical expertise and people already working
achievable in the short-medium term: challenge ideally achievable within a 2-5 year timeframe
With over 16 per cent of electricity already generated by renewables, Scotland is a world-leader in alternative energy. The Saltire Prize capitalises on Scotland's strengths and carries the potential for Scotland to advance its own economy and energy independence while making a substantial contribution to the world's most pressing challenges www.scotland.gov.uk/saltireprize
2.2. Climate Change
2.2.1. Climate change is one of the most serious threats facing Scotland and the world. The most severe global consequences include famine, drought and the extinction of species. The scale of climate change occurring at present is unprecedented and evidence points to this being caused mainly by human activities. Scotland continues to emit greenhouse gases at a rate disproportionate to our size, and our consumption patterns are unsustainable. The chart below shows net emissions of both carbon dioxide and all greenhouse gas emissions between 1990 and 2005 in Scotland, as recorded in the Greenhouse Gas Inventories for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
2.2.2. The Scottish Government was represented at official level, as part of the UK delegation, at the third meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol in Bali in December 2007. The conference achieved an historic breakthrough in agreeing a roadmap to achieve a global deal by the end of 2009. The roadmap recognises that deep cuts in global emissions are needed. The conference agreed to address the four 'building blocks' of mitigation, adaptation, technology and financing. Agreements were also reached on addressing deforestation, work to accelerate investment in technology, and a fund to support adaptation in developing countries.
2.2.3. Before the launch of the climate change and energy initiative in 2007, the EU had committed to reducing its collective greenhouse gas emissions by 8% compared to 1990 in order to contribute to the Kyoto Protocol target of 5.2% overall. The UK share of the EU collective target was 12.5%. The key plank for achieving the EU target is the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (EUETS) which began in January 2005 and is the largest greenhouse gas emissions trading scheme in the world. The scheme is mandatory for large emitters, covers around 50% of Scottish net CO 2 emissions and is designed to ensure that emissions reductions are made where they are most cost-effective.
2.2.4. Against this background and taking a strong lead, the Scottish Government has consulted on proposals for a Scottish Climate Change Bill, including a target to reduce emissions by 80% by 2050 - further details can be found at: http://www.scotland.gov.uk/climatechangebill. The Bill will set a clear, long-term legal framework thereby allowing businesses, organisations and individuals to invest in energy and carbon saving technologies with certainty. The consultation on the Bill closed on 23 April 2008. Over 21,000 responses were received and a report on the analysis of the consultation responses was published on 20 August 2008. The Scottish Government plan to introduce the Scottish Climate Change Bill into Parliament before the end of 2008.
2.3. Scotland in Europe and in the United Kingdom 2.3.1. Further developments have been taking place at a European level. At the Spring European Council on 8 and 9 March 2007, EU Heads of Government agreed an ambitious unilateral binding target to reduce Europe's greenhouse gas emissions by at least 20% by 2020 (compared to 1990 levels) and to increase this commitment to a 30% reduction if an international agreement is reached. In parallel with this decision a new Energy Policy for Europe was agreed, which set a number of objectives including the following key targets:
an improvement in energy efficiency in order to save 20% of the EU's projected energy consumption in 2020;
a binding target for renewable energy to make up 20% of overall EU final energy consumption (i.e. not just electricity) by 2020; a binding target for renewables to make up a minimum of 10% of transport petrol and diesel consumption by 2020.
2.3.2. The Commission published on 23 January 2008 a package of measures to help implement these targets, including a draft comprehensive framework directive for renewable energies. It covers the three energy sectors: electricity, transport, and energy used for heating and cooling. It aims to provide a framework for increasing the share of renewable energy to 20% of final EU energy consumption, including sharing out this target amongst Member States, and (within this target) a 10% share of renewable energy in transport petrol and diesel consumption. It addresses standards and requires national action plans to be prepared for each Member State by 31 March 2010. The national action plans shall set out Member States' targets for the shares of energy from renewable sources in transport, electricity and heating and cooling in 2020, and adequate measures to be taken to achieve these targets, including national policies to develop existing biomass resources and mobilise new biomass resources for different uses, and the measures to be taken to ensure issues such as access to the grid and the environmental sustainability of biofuels. The Council and Parliament have begun consideration of the draft directive and expect consideration to be taken forward during the French Presidency of the Council in the second half of 2008.
The Scottish Government has identified support for the EUs' Energy Policy for Europe (EPE) as one of its 5 main priority areas under its European Action Plan. It aims to position Scotland as a leader in the development of green, sustainable energy and to influence the development of EU policy to support this aim. This will not only assist climate change objectives but help the growth of energy as a key economic sector in Scotland.
The Scottish Government is committed to work towards the achievement of 20% of total Scottish energy use coming from renewable sources by 2020, in line with the overall EU approach. In this context it is:
working with the UK Government and European partners on the implications of the proposed renewables directive, including the ways in which Scotland can meet the 20% target and the implication of the directive for our long term plans to export some of our vast renewables potential to our European neighbours; intended that this proposed Renewables Framework should contribute to the
Scottish element of the UK National Action Plan for renewable energy, which will be required under the proposed EU directive;
working with the UK Government and European partners on parallel proposed directives on Carbon Capture and Storage and Emissions Trading; taking forward, with support from the European Energy and Research Commissioners, the establishment of a Scottish European Green Energy Centre. This will develop networks and partnerships with research and deployment bodies for green energy in like minded countries designed to promote the deployment of green energy technologies and contribute towards the new targets of the EPE. It will disseminate throughout Europe the results of this work, and hold seminars and conferences for academics and practitioners.
2.3.5. Scottish Ministers have a range of powers which they may use to promote the development of renewable energy (while taking into account other considerations such as protecting the environment). But aspects of energy development - and in particular market issues relating to electricity generation and transmission - are regulated under policies set by the UK Government. The Scottish Government is committed to seeing the market develop in way which provides a robust and fair framework for renewable energy development and removes barriers in its way while providing a fair deal for consumers and energy users more widely. The Scottish Government therefore maintains a close dialogue not just with Departments of the UK Government but also with UK wide bodies working in the energy field such as Ofgem Further details are given in relevant sections in this document.
2.4. Sustainable economic growth
We could become Europe's biggest exporter of renewable energy if we take robust advantage of our potential. Scotland's emissions, and the potential to reduce emissions in Scotland, are different from the rest of the UK. As well as our wind and marine potential we have in our forests both a contributor to biomass energy and the ability to absorb CO2. The majority of the UK's forest area is in Scotland and the Scottish Government proposes expanding forest cover from 17% of the land area to 25%. In this context we will look carefully at how the public estate can contribute further to renewable targets.
The Strategy for Economic Development includes a national performance framework, covering all public sector bodies in Scotland including local authorities, against which progress towards the overall Government purpose should be judged. This includes an overall interim target of reducing emissions by 2011 and a longer term target to reduce overall emissions by 80% by 2050. It also includes a national indicator to achieve 50% of gross electricity consumption from renewable sources by 2020, with an interim target of 31% by 2011. Our objective is that actions to achieve these targets should, as far as possible, also contribute to achievement of targets for growth of the economy, to raise Scotland's GDP growth rate to the UK level by 2011 and to match the GDP growth rate of the small independent EU countries by 2017.
In seeking to achieve the objectives of energy policy we need good evidence. For the benefit of all policy areas we are currently developing tools and guidance that will help policy makers to assess the carbon impact of policies in a manner consistent with national and international obligations. This will enable the identification and quantification of specific carbon impacts and timescales during policy evaluation and will therefore ensure that climate change impacts are considered as part of the policy development process. This applies to renewable energy in the same way any other development; for example the impact of wind farms on peatlands is one of the issues that are now taken into account in considering new applications for consent.
2.4.4. Developing a comprehensive approach to renewable energy provides opportunities to meet climate change targets, demonstrate our commitment to shared European and international objectives and contribute to sustainable economic growth in Scotland. It also provides a real platform to develop the industries of tomorrow in matters as diverse as electricity generation and heat and insulation technology which can place Scotland at the leading edge of countries which are making the most of the opportunity to deliver both sustainable economic growth and carbon targets at the same time. This framework will provide the basis for investment in our country's future.
3. Energy Efficiency
Improving energy efficiency is widely recognised as the easiest and most cost-effective means of reducing carbon dioxide emissions and needs to be pursued in parallel with measures to increase renewable energy use. This will have benefits in terms of job creation in products and services.
We fund the work of the Energy Saving Trust and its network of centres and the Carbon Trust in Scotland to offer advice and support to the domestic, business and public sector on how to improve their energy efficiency.
The Scottish Government is using building standards and the planning system to help achieve low carbon buildings.
We are developing and implementing a CERT Strategy for Scotland in partnership with the energy supply companies, the Energy Saving Trust and Ofgem.
We will continue to work with the UK Government to consider what additional energy efficiency measures could be adopted across the UK to cost effectively reduce carbon emissions.
We are committed to continually reviewing, improving, simplifying and streamlining programme delivery to ensure that support is effectively targeted.
We will set out in 2008 our Energy Efficiency and Micro-generation Action Plan, outlining the actions we are taking and plan to take across Government.
We [are considering the recommendations of the Fuel Poverty Forum on redesigning our fuel poverty programmes, to ensure they provide maximum help to those struggling with high fuel bills
Developing renewables is only one part of our overall approach to developing sustainable energy production and use in Scotland. Demand for energy continues to grow. Under current patterns of production, this leads to increased carbon emissions and tends to drive higher energy prices. Improving energy efficiency is widely recognised as the easiest and most cost-effective means of reducing carbon dioxide emissions and needs to be pursued in parallel with measures to increase renewable energy use.
The financial benefits of investing in energy efficiency are clear: - industry and society can achieve more with less energy, public services are delivered at lower cost, and fuel poverty is reduced. Better insulated buildings and more energy efficient workplaces cut energy bills for householders and businesses. Energy efficiency can also be achieved through better practice in our use of energy (switching lights off, less use of standby). Reducing demand in these ways also puts less pressure on energy supplies.
The Stern Review states that:
Studies by the International Energy Agency show that, by 2050, energy efficiency has the
potential to be the biggest single source of emissions savings in the energy sector. This would
have both environmental and economic benefits: energy-efficiency measures cut waste and
often save money.
Stern goes on to suggest that reductions in global CO2 emissions due to greater energy efficiency could be between 31% and 53% of the total reductions achievable by 2050.
However it is not always clear that individuals and organisations fully realise the benefits that can be achieved through simple energy efficiency measures. There are still barriers to be overcome: making use of and acting on clear and trusted information, disruption if works are taking place, and the initial financial investment - although most energy efficiency measures save money in a relatively short time. A key element of our approach is to increase the quality of information available to people and businesses to allow them to reach better informed decisions about ways to manage more effectively their energy use.
The Scottish Government has devolved responsibilities for the promotion of energy efficiency and takes on the challenging role of changing behaviour through raising awareness and providing advice and financial incentives to improve energy efficiency across the public, business and domestic sectors. The Scottish Government funds:
support provided by the Carbon Trust and the Energy Saving Trust;
a new network of energy savings advice centres in Scotland
an interest-free loan scheme for SMEs;
an energy efficiency fund for the public sector;
fuel poverty programmes.
The Scottish Government also supports Envirowise, which provides advice to business and the public sector on waste prevention, the efficient use of water and reducing unnecessary use of raw materials. Much of Envirowise's work (e.g. reducing the unnecessary use of raw materials) will also have energy efficiency benefits. The Scottish Government is considering whether changes could be made to the resource efficiency programmes it supports, to provide a more joined-up service to the consumer.
The Scottish Government is also using building standards and the planning system to help achieve low carbon buildings. The Sullivan report recommends staged increases in energy standards for new buildings to substantially reduce emissions, with a route-map to the goal of zero carbon buildings. The impact of the recommendations are currently being investigated and it is intended that proposals for changes to the energy standards will be issued to consultation early next year, with a view to changes being introduced in 2010. Work to prevent waste and increase recycling also has energy efficiency benefits. For example, it often takes less energy to make new products from recycled materials than from virgin materials. The Scottish Government also plans to consult on further measures to reduce energy use and emissions from existing housing to enable us to build on the impact of current energy efficiency and fuel poverty programmes and to contribute to our emission reduction objectives. Further improvements to housing energy efficiency are central to this and, going forward, the use of renewable energy sources alongside a more energy efficient housing stock, will become increasingly important.
Some regulatory powers associated with energy efficiency are the responsibility of Westminster, for example, the obligation on energy suppliers to support energy efficiency measures by their customers through the Carbon Emissions Reduction Target (CERT). The Scottish Government is concerned that Scotland may not be benefitting fully from CERT and we want to ensure a more strategic and integrated approach to maximising the impact of CERT in Scotland. We are therefore developing and implementing a CERT Strategy for Scotland in partnership with the energy supply companies, the Energy Saving Trust and Ofgem. During 2008, regulation-making functions were transferred from the UK Government to Scottish Ministers which will enable Scotland to implement fully European Community obligations concerning energy efficiency at industrial plants.
We will continue to work with the UK Government in such areas and encourage them to consider what additional energy efficiency measures could be adopted across the UK to cost effectively reduce carbon emissions. For example, an accelerated roll out of advanced displays and metering technologies, and more accurate billing in homes, could help to raise public awareness of what activities use the most energy and what changes in behaviour produce the greatest reduction in energy consumption.
The Scottish Fuel Poverty Forum was reconvened in May to advise Ministers on the best way to take forward fuel poverty programmes in future. They will report to Ministers shortly, and ministers will consider and implement their recommendations as soon as possible. Energy companies have agreed to work with the Government on providing a package of insulation measures, funded under CERT, to fuel poor households, and we anticipate that this may form part of any future fuel poverty programme.
Going forward we want to ensure that we have the right incentives in place to encourage energy efficiency and micro-generation - we are committed to continually reviewing, improving, simplifying and streamlining programme delivery to ensure that support is effectively targeted.
We also want to ensure that we create the right conditions to support the developing low carbon technology industry so as to build consumer confidence and transform the market from early adopters into widespread take-up. The newly established Scottish Construction Industry Low Carbon Steering Group brings together a range of partners including the building trades, academic researchers, enterprise networks, skills and training organisations, architects and Government. Its main focus is to identify the action needed by Government and others to take advantage of our strengths and drive a flourishing low carbon buildings industry in Scotland.
The Scottish Government will set out how it is translating key objectives into action through an Energy Efficiency and Microgeneration Action Plan. This will take into account responses to the previous administrations' consultation on a draft Energy Efficiency and Microgeneration Strategy which ran during 2007. An analysis of the responses to this consultation, and a separate Scottish Government response to the issues raised during this consultation, were published in June 2008. Action will also reflect the results of the independent review of energy efficiency and micro-generation support in Scotland undertaken by Halcrow and published in June 2008, and the consultation on the Scottish Climate Change Bill which seeks views on further incentives to encourage energy efficiency.
We also need to change the way we treat waste heat, making sure it can be treated as a resource and used efficiently whenever possible Whether it be from power stations or computer/office air conditioning or process plant we should always try to capture, store and reuse it where economic to do so. The Scottish Government is preparing guidance separately for thermal applications for s36 consents for electricity generation, and this will include guidance on heat matters.
In the transport sector, we are encouraging energy efficiency by working with UK Government on economic measures, such as the introduction of new bandings of Vehicle Excise that will reward vehicles with low emissions and set new higher bands for the worst polluting cars. Regulatory measures include a mandatory European approach to new car CO2 emission standards, where a target of 130gmC02/km is currently being negotiated for 2012. In developing a longer term target for emissions reduction, the UK have called for a longer- term target of 100g/km by 2020.
To encourage behavioural change in the transport sector, Scottish Government support for bus services is considerable, amounting to some £280 million per year. This substantial investment is intended to help the industry drive down fare costs, encourage more routes and enable more older and disabled people to use these important services. This complements communication programmes to promote more efficient and environmentally aware driving being developed by the Energy Saving Trust. The Safe and Fuel Efficient Driving campaign encourages efficient operating practices in the haulage industry, which helps reduce fuel consumption. The continued support and promotion of Traveline Scotland is further supported by development of new guidance and resources for Travel Planning via www.chooseanotherway.com, which provides advice to organisation to encourage staff and visitors to use more active and sustainable modes of travel on the commute to work as well as business travel.
The Smarter Choices, Smarter Places programme supports demonstration projects in towns and cities to illustrate what can be achieved through a concentrated programme of walking and cycling infrastructure improvement alongside measures such as travel plans for workplaces, schools and individuals, personal travel marketing and promotion of active travel and public transport.
A Cycling Action Plan for Scotland (CAPS) will be developed in 2008-09 through consultation event with the people of Scotland and stakeholders, with the goal of getting more people to cycle more often. This grass routes approach to cycling policy development will help to shape an action plan that will be meaningful to everyone. It will be helpful to local authorities in developing their single outcome agreements and local transport strategies, and also to central government in shaping policy around the Government's Economic Strategy and the National Performance Framework.
Our commitment to develop renewable energy is part of our overall commitment to a more sustainable use of energy, of which energy efficiency as well as sustainable transport form part. We are taking forward proposals in these areas through a number of different initiatives and will seek to ensure that our policies across these separate but
related areas work in the same direction towards shared goals. We will consider the forthcoming report of the Fuel Poverty Forum on redesigning our fuel poverty programmes, to ensure they provide maximum help to those struggling with high fuel bills
From now to 2020
4. Achieving 20% of energy consumption from renewable sources
The Scottish Government is keen to play an active and leading role in the overall European commitment to increase the share of renewable energy to 20% of final EU energy consumption by 2020.
The Commission has proposed a burden sharing arrangement across the EU, taking into account the current situation on renewable energy in each Member State and the relative GDP of each country. The UK's proposed share is 15%, up from the current figure of under 2%. Scotland will be expected to contribute to the UK's overall share and to play a part in the UK National Action Plan.
The Scottish Government believes that Scotland should aspire to a higher figure than the UK as a whole, and would like to aim for the figure of 20% of overall energy use. To reach this figure significant progress above current levels will be required in all sectors. This consultation document considers the range of measures that will be needed and how we propose, in conjunction with the UK as a whole, to get there. It is also important to stress that this is in no sense a cap but rather an interim stage towards our more long term vision for renewable energy in Scotland, where we see Scotland playing a leading role in conjunction with European partners in developing and supplying renewable energy to a wider market. We will look at going further than this if it is possible and practical to do so.
4.4. In considering the contribution that Scotland will make, the following issues should be taken into account (please note that these statistics are our current best estimate and will need refinement as better statistics become available).
The current breakdown of total energy use by sector in Scotland is 45% heat; 29% transport; and 26% electricity.
The current % of energy use from renewable sources in Scotland, broken down to electricity, heat and transport, is as follows:
Electricity - 2002 - 12% of gross electricity consumption; 2006 - 16% Heat - 2002 1%; 2006 1%
Biofuels in petrol and diesel - 2002 0.01%; 2006 0.44%
Overall (Scottish final energy consumption) - 2002 3.4%; 2006 4.6%.
On the basis of renewables providing 50% of gross electricity consumption (our current target), and 10% of transport use, and renewables in heat staying at 1%, renewable sources would provide some 15-17% of total energy use in Scotland by 2020.
If renewable electricity reached 50% and transport 10%, renewable heat would need to increase to at least 11% of total heat use for renewables as a whole to account for 20%.
If renewable heat remained at 1% and transport 10%, renewable electricity would need to rise to at least 62% of gross electricity consumption for renewables as a whole to account for 20%.
If renewable heat remained at 1%, and transport also remained at 1%, renewable electricity would need to rise to at least 69% of gross electricity consumption for renewables as a whole to account for 20%.
4.5. The working assumption behind this consultation document is that we should make progress in all three areas in order to provide a flexible mix, thus bringing business benefit to a wide range of economic sectors. Our preferred option to meet the 20% target is to aim for at least 50% of gross electricity consumption from renewable sources, some 11% from heat and some 10% from transport.
Questions for debate
Do consultees agree that we should aim at 20% to meet the 2020 target and that progress should be made in all three sectors of electricity, heat and transport?
If not - why not?
The rest of the document looks at different forms of energy use, the opportunities each presents and the ways in which development may need to be facilitated. Readers may therefore want to reflect on those chapters before responding to this question.
5. Renewable Electricity
Objective: to facilitate the development of renewable electricity so as to reduce carbon emissions and promote economic growth as well as to enable greater exploitation of the renewable energy resource and drive down costs.
In meeting our 2011 interim target of 31% of gross electricity consumption from renewable sources we expect the vast bulk of new capacity to be delivered by additional onshore wind power stations. Smaller scale developments - wind and hydro - are valued for their contribution to energy supply and community benefit and we wish to encourage the development of these.
Onshore wind will continue to increase beyond 2011 playing a strong part in meeting our 2020 target, but we also expect offshore wind, marine and tidal and biomass to make significant contributions in the next decade. The Scottish Government wishes to support the development of emerging technologies so as to achieve a balanced mix of renewable generation.
The Scottish Government supports powers in the UK Energy Bill which will allow the provision of varying levels of support for different technologies under the Renewable Obligation Scotland (ROS) mechanism, thus driving the development of less mature technologies.
To achieve our objectives significant increases in grid capacity will be required, both onshore and offshore. The Scottish Government is in dialogue with BERR and Ofgem to ensure that regulatory mechanisms are aligned fully with the need to exploit renewable resources - which are found predominantly in Scotland.
A major study on grid security concludes that the Scottish transmission network could cope with 8 GW of installed renewables capacity in 2020 without the need for significant investment, other than that which has already been approved by Ofgem, and without adversely impacting upon grid system stability or system security.
We are looking forward to the growth of offshore wind and marine energy and considering potential for export. We are working with European partners to look at how current grid regimes might develop in the future and specifically the feasibility of offshore grids ("supergrids"), which will be essential as we move beyond 2020 towards large scale exports of renewable electricity.
Development of new generating capacity is led by the private sector acting within a regulated market. In making investment decisions, developers will take into account any financial benefits which may result from renewable energy as compared with other options for investment and will take into account any real or perceived barriers to the realisation of their project proposals.
The Scottish Government therefore recognises the need to provide a policy context which will encourage investment, while at the same time balancing energy objectives with other objectives such as protection of the natural environment.
5.1.3. This chapter looks first at how our target of meeting 50% of gross electricity consumption from renewable generation in Scotland by 2020 might be achieved, and at what contribution we might reasonably expect from different technologies. The subsequent sections set out how the Scottish Government is taking action to facilitate investment and remove barriers, whether by:
acting directly itself;
seeking to influence UK and EU policy;
supporting industry in its individual and collective actions.
5.2. Generation Structure
5.2.1. Scotland's electricity is currently produced by a small number of large coal, gas and nuclear generating stations, together with a larger number of smaller renewable plant. (mainly established hydro and onshore wind). This is illustrated in the chart below.
Amount of Electricity Generated, By Energy Source (2006)
Hydro pumped storage
We wish to move to a much greater proportion of renewable energy, together with cleaner generation from coal and gas. Scotland's potential renewable electricity capacity, as illustrated in the chart below, has been estimated by previous studies to be around 60 GW - sufficient to meet peak demand for power around ten times over. The scale of the resource dictates that there is potential for substantial exports to the rest of the United Kingdom and neighbouring countries in Northern Europe. In developing the resource(s), both regulatorsand developers need to take into account environmental and other constraints and ensure that carbon benefits are considered as well as financial costs. With this in mind, however, renewable electricity represents a major economic opportunity for Scotland which needs to be pursued over time, including the necessary investment in marine and tidal technology in particular and in the subsea grids which will be needed to transport the electricity to market. As such, progress towards 2020 needs to be seen as a stepping stone towards more substantial exports in the next decade and beyond, rather than an end in itself.
Renewable Electricity Potential
o (0 a (0 o
30 25 20 15 10 5 0
/ / / / / /
The Scottish Government is on track to meet its renewable electricity targets of 31% of gross electricity consumption by 2011 and 50% by 2020. This is not a cap, but a step on the way to our longer term vision, and we will look at going further than this if it is possible and practical to do so. We believe that precise targets for the contribution of different technologies are not appropriate. This will be a matter determined largely by the market and by consenting decisions, albeit influenced to a significant extent by policy mechanisms such as the Renewables Obligation. However, we have examined different scenarios in order to be satisfied that targets can be met and to identify actions necessary to achieve these.
Our targets relate to meeting gross electricity consumption - which is measured and expressed in GigaWatt hours (GWh), i.e. in terms of actual output rather than installed capacity. Installed capacity will not run at full potential all of the time, and will be influenced by such factors as weather conditions, down time for repairs etc. Wind, for example, is categorised as "variable" or "intermittent" energy with onshore wind delivering from 25-45% of theoretical potential, depending on the site in question. Hydro can operate at levels of 40-% plus, while thermal plants (gas, coal and biomass) operate at 85% of capacity. This variability has to be taken into account when estimating the amount of installed capacity that might be required to meet our targets.
On the assumption that renewable sources will operate at 30% of theoretical potential, we estimate that we will require 5 GW to achieve the 2011 target and 8.3-8.4 GW to achieve 50% by 2020. Current installed renewables capacity is around 2.8 GW. There is a further 1.7 GW of capacity approved under the Electricity Act (i.e. above 50 MW) under construction, and approximately 2.5 GW of capacity of Section 36 applications in the system, with more (smaller projects) being approved and considered by councils. We have offered pre- application opinions on a further 2 GW of potential developments. We expect many further applications which will feed into 2020 capacity. However, allowing time for the application process and construction, projects which will contribute in 2020 will probably have to be in the planning system by 2017. Prior to that data gathering is required and, in the case of emerging technologies, testing and refining of devices. It will also be important to extend the lifetime of the Renewable Obligation beyond 2017.
Some 1.6 GW of current capacity is in the form of hydro electricity, with the remainder coming from onshore wind and a small amount of biomass and offshore wind. For 2011 we expect the vast bulk of new capacity to be delivered by additional onshore wind power stations. Onshore wind will continue to increase beyond 2011, but we also expect offshore wind, wave and tidal and biomass to make a significant contribution in the next decade, as set out in the next chapter. It is too early to make detailed predictions of the balance in technology while details of the way the Renewables Obligation will work are being finalised, but by way of illustration, the breakdown might be on the following lines:
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