Scotland is punching above its weight in energy production – especially when it comes to green electricity from our vast renewable resources.
Yet, a recent Daily Express article made a bizarre claim that an independent Scotland would be unable to export its electricity to the rest of the UK.
Let’s have a reality check.
Scotland produces more power than we need
According to the data from 2019, Scotland’s renewable electricity generation in one year alone was equivalent to powering all Scottish households for over three years.
In fact, in 2019, we only used about 58% of the total power we generated.
Scotland is a world power when it comes to renewable energy 🌊
Think of a country that has abundant natural resources, coupled with bold goals to tackle climate change. Think Scotland ➡️ https://t.co/PX5oG19sck#ScotlandIsNow #ClimateAction pic.twitter.com/WkbEdWoMkW
— Scottish Development International (@ScotDevInt) January 12, 2021
England uses more electricity than it produces
England’s population accounts for around 84% that of the UK.
In 2019, England generated 72% of the UK’s electricity supply – but it used 81%.
Because England doesn’t produce enough to meet its demand, it has to rely on exports.
Scotland is a net exporter of electricity, selling more than ever
According to the latest data, in 2020 Scotland generated more renewable electricity than ever.
97.4% of Scotland’s gross electricity consumption came from renewables.
The record high production also meant that Scotland’s net exports were higher than ever, worth around £760 million – and up by 21% compared to 2019.
— UN Environment Programme (@UNEP) August 3, 2017
Meanwhile, England is increasingly reliant on electricity imports from Scotland
In 2019, Scotland exported almost one third (32%) of its electricity to England and Northern Ireland.
According to recent trends, England is actually increasing its reliance on power generated in Scotland – with imports up by 24% in 2020.
And even after Brexit, England is still importing power from the EU – despite a Brexit deal which gives the EU a right to cut off the UK’s energy supplies.
Surely Westminster isn’t expecting us to believe that England would choose to sit through power cuts, rather than continue buying the electricity it needs from Scotland?
Brexit deal gives EU right to cut off energy supplies if UK tries to ‘take back control’ of fishing in 2026 https://t.co/CyuWa7PIik
— i newspaper (@theipaper) December 30, 2020
Scotland is leading a renewables revolution…
WWF Scotland praised Scotland’s leading efforts on renewables, stating that “Scotland’s wind energy revolution is clearly powering ahead“.
We’re delivering a renewables revolution that contributes over £5 billion to our economy every year, and already employs over 22,650 people.
This is only set to increase further, as the Scottish Government is working to increase offshore wind generation tenfold by 2030.
🌊 Scotland has extraordinary energy resources, with 25% of Europe’s offshore wind potential and 25% of Europe’s tidal power potential.
⚡ We already generate over 90% of electricity from renewables.
🏴 We have what it takes to become a successful, greener, independent country. pic.twitter.com/hzPfTPGt3a
— Yes (@YesScot) February 3, 2021
…despite Tory energy policies that hold Scotland’s renewables industry back
Westminster energy policies are designed to make Scotland’s renewables industry less competitive, by charging astronomical prices for companies to access the infrastructure needed to distribute the energy they produce.
A recent study revealed that electricity producers in Scotland face the highest charges in Europe to access the National Grid, which is controlled by Westminster.
For example, producers in the north of Scotland are forced to pay a £7.33/MWh charge, while many European countries pay either a fraction of that, or nothing at all.
The Renewables UK report concluded that European generators “clearly have an advantage over Scottish projects when supplying to the GB market” – put simply, Westminster policies make it harder for Scotland to export our green electricity to Europe.
Scotland has the power to thrive with independence
Scotland is already a world leader in renewables – and with our unparalleled natural resources, we could do even better.
With less than 1% of Europe’s population, Scotland has 25% of Europe’s entire offshore wind resources, as well as 25% of Europe’s entire tidal energy resources.
Scotland also has the world’s largest energy research group, with over 700 scientists, academics and experts leading cutting-edge innovation.
It’s clear that free from damaging Westminster policies, Scotland has what it takes to be a successful independent nation. Read more facts here.
💷 A big economy
🎓 Highly-educated population
🌊 Renewable energy powerhouse
🌍 World leader in climate action
🛰️ Innovative industries
It’s clear Scotland has what it takes to thrive as an independent country.
Scotland will have the choice.pic.twitter.com/7MagTzyJMz
— Yes (@YesScot) July 26, 2021