Renewable energy has seen another year of strong growth. We now have over 1 GW of renewable energy capacity which supplies 7.3 per cent of our electricity.

Solar has been the dominant technology but renewable heat has also had a record year. We have also seen innovative projects such as New Earth’s 13 MW advanced thermal conversion facility, investment in technology development such as Marine Current Turbines tidal energy and assembly facility and new ownership models demonstrated by local authority and community projects.

However, we are not on track to meet the government’s target of 15 per cent of our energy from renewable sources by 2020 – on current trends will reach around 9 per cent.

This means we are missing out on:

  • jobs and investment - if we hit the 2020 target we could see jobs in the sector grow from 10,000 now to 34,000. On current trends we estimate there will be just 15,000 jobs
  • the opportunity to use our excellent natural resources to become less reliant on uncertain overseas sources of fossil fuels
  • using our local renewable energy resources to generate income to invest in the future of local communities.


Published: August 2013