Wind power output in Scotland has helped set a new record for the first half of the year, according to an independent conservation group.
Analysis by WWF Scotland of data provided by WeatherEnergy found wind turbines provided around 1,039,001MWh of electricity to the National Grid during June.
Renewable energy figures show the power generated last month was enough to supply the electrical needs equivalent to 118 per cent of Scottish households or nearly three million homes.
In the first six months of 2017 enough power was generated to supply more than all of Scotland’s national demand for six days.
Turbines provided 6,634,585MWh of electricity to the National Grid, which analysts say could on average supply the electrical needs of 124 per cent of Scottish households, or more than three million homes.
Dr Sam Gardner, acting director of WWF Scotland, said: “The first six months of 2017 have certainly been incredible for renewables, with wind turbines alone helping to ensure millions of tonnes of climate-damaging carbon emissions were avoided.
“Scotland is continuing to break records on renewable electricity, attracting investment, creating jobs and tackling climate change.
“If we want to reap the same rewards in the transport and heating sectors, we need the Scottish government to put in place strong policies on energy efficiency and transport in the forthcoming Climate Change Bill.
“That’s why we’re calling on people to act for our future and tell the First Minister they want a strong climate bill that will deliver a fairer and healthier low carbon Scotland.”
The figures for January to June this year showed an increase of 24 per cent compared to 2015, when wind energy provided 5,359,995MWh.
Scotland’s total electricity consumption including homes, business and industry for first six months was 11,689,385MWh.
Renewables experts say this means wind generated the equivalent of 57 per cent of Scotland’s entire electricity needs.
Karen Robinson, of WeatherEnergy, said: “It’s great to see this data confirm that Scotland is knocking it out of the park on wind power with total output for June in particular up on the same period compared to the past two years.
“There’s no doubt renewables are helping households increasingly avoid fossil fuels for their electricity needs.”
Scotland’s energy minister Paul Wheelhouse said: “It’s great to hear renewable electricity generation in Scotland has reached a new record high. In the first quarter of this year, generation was up by 13 per cent compared to the same period last year, there was also a 16 per cent increase in capacity, and more than half of all gross electricity consumption in Scotland continues to come from renewables.
“Scotland’s total installed renewable capacity, that’s the amount of renewable electricity we are capable of producing, now stands at 9.3 GW – four times what it was only a decade ago. These statistics reinforce our country’s reputation as a renewable energy powerhouse and are a vindication of the Scottish government’s energy policy.”
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