Scottish Affairs committee accuses government of complacency

Pete Wishart, chair of the House of Commons Scottish Affairs Committee, has accused the government of complacency over the future of renewables in Scotland.

As the government’s response to the committee’s report on renewable energy in Scotland was published, Wishart said it showed “a worrying complacency. They are right to recognise the strong performance of Scotland’s renewable sector, but they have not responded to the voices of those in the industry who have told us that they are facing an uncertain future.
“We are told that everything is fine, but where are the reassurances to the renewable sector that the support will be there to encourage the development of new plants and new technologies? Where is the investment in infrastructure? They have provided us with a tacit admission that they think onshore wind has reached its limit, let us hope that is not their view of the industry as a whole.”

In response to the committee’s report, which called for an assessment of the effect of policy changes on Scottish deployment, the government said, “The deployment of renewables in Scotland continues to rise, driven by the support received as a result of UK government policies.”

In response to the committee’s request for a review of changes to onshore wind, the government said, that the target for onshore wind was 11-13GW. “Our analysis indicated there was already enough onshore wind in the pipeline to meet this range. It was appropriate, in accordance with the Government’s manifesto commitment, to curtail further deployment.”  It ‘noted’ recommendations over setting clear budgets for Contract for Difference auctions and moving forward on connections to Scottish islands.

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