Scotland is on course for a record year of renewable electricity generation, with 19% greater output in the first three quarters of 2017 than in the same period last year.
The UK government statistics have shown that renewable energy delivered the equivalent of 54% of Scotland’s gross electricity consumption in 2016, and accounted for a record 42.9% of total Scottish electricity generation.
The government figures also revealed that Scotland generated approximately 24% of total UK renewable electricity last year.
On a UK level, the third quarter of 2017 delivered 30% higher share of electricity produced from renewables – up 4.6% on last year’s figures.
Renewable electricity generation was 22.3TWh in the quarter, an increase of 15% on the 19.3TWh in the third quarter of 2016.
The capacity of available renewable electricity sources was 38.9GW at the end of the quarter three of 2017, which is a 13% increase or 4.4GW on a year earlier.
At the end of third quarter 2017, the cumulative installed capacity for shoreline wave and tidal in UK stood at 18MW, while the electricity generation from these sources reached 1GWh during the quarter.
Paul Wheelhouse, Minister for Business, Innovation and Energy, said: “The future for renewable energy is bright in Scotland and these figures show that well over 50% of our electricity consumption was delivered by renewables and we now know capacity and generation figures for the first three quarters of 2017 are very strong.
“A low carbon economy is not just a practical way forward and renewable energy affects a very large share of our greenhouse gas emissions, but Scotland’s clean, green energy resources are now playing an increasingly crucial role in the security of Scotland’s energy supply.”