Scotland has confirmed its intentions to put low carbon growth at the heart of its economic strategy with the publication of a new energy strategy.
The Scottish government has announced £80 million in funding for low carbon projects and has outlined six key priorities that will guide decision-making in the energy sphere in the future.
The publication of the strategy document follows a public consultation on draft policy proposals earlier this year. The strategy highlights the connections between the energy system and all parts of the economy, the government said.
“This strategy recognises and builds on our achievements to date and on Scotland’s capacity for innovation,” said Business, Energy and Innovation Minister Paul Wheelhouse. “It places consumers, and their interests, more firmly than ever at the heart of everything that we do.
“This strategy will guide decisions of the Scottish government over the coming decades. We want to make sure, within the scope of our devolved powers, good stewardship of Scotland’s energy sector – something we have called the UK government to step up to for years.”
The strategy includes a range of actions, including a £20 million Energy Investment Fund, which will build on the success of the Renewable Energy Investment Fund, and a £60 million Low Carbon Innovation Fund, to provide dedicated support for renewable and low carbon infrastructure.
These actions will help Scotland to reach ambitious clean energy goals, including supplying half of the energy for Scotland’s heat, transport and electricity consumption with renewable energy by 2030.
The strategy’s six energy priorities include promoting energy efficiency and consumer engagement, building secure and flexible energy supplies, promoting renewable energy development and opportunities, and supporting the oil and gas sector.
The Scottish government also confirmed that it will consult in 2018 on the creation of a publicly-owned, non-profit energy company to support economic development and contribute to tackling fuel poverty.