Renewables ‘added £10m to Scottish communities’

Communities across Scotland benefited by more than £10 million last year thanks to the renewables industry. Around 154 projects, including large-scale wind farms and small-scale hydro, are on the community […]

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By Priyanka Shrestha

Communities across Scotland benefited by more than £10 million last year thanks to the renewables industry.

Around 154 projects, including large-scale wind farms and small-scale hydro, are on the community renewables register – a record achievement for the country, according to the Scottish Government.

Energy Minister Fergus Ewing hailed the nation’s recent achievements in the sector, including the target for community or local ownership of renewables being met five years early.

Around 508MW of capacity is now operational in Scotland, exceeding the 500MW target by 2020.

Mr Ewing added: “2015 was a bumper year for community energy and 2016 can be just as exciting.

“Community energy can cut costs for consumers, create new revenue streams to transform communities and play a leading role in tackling climate change. Over £10 million a year from onshore renewable projects is now going straight back into people’s hands, empowering people to make the most of their own local resources.

“Benefits ploughed back into communities can fund all sorts of schemes, from energy efficiency and fuel poverty programmes to befriending projects which reduce isolation for elderly people.”