The Real Cost Of Scotland’s Obsession With Renewable Energy
By Paul Homewood
Ardrossan Wind Farm
Yesterday I looked at just how little wind power is being produced in England. The other side of the coin, of course, is Scotland, where the situation is reversed. There, wind power accounts for more than a quarter of total generation.
The SNP like to brag about this fact, and are committed to going much further.
But how much does all of this cost in subsidies?
Currently, renewable generators receive Renewable Obligation Certificates (ROCs). These vary according to technology, with, for instance, offshore wind currently receiving 1.8 ROCs per MWh. The Committee on Climate Change give the value of these ROCs, as per the table below, in their calculations for the Fifth Carbon Budget. Their figures take account of changes in allocations since 2012.
Output data is from DECC. (No split is available for wind, but installed capacity numbers would suggest offshore accounts for about 5%).
All of this subsidy is passed onto UK electricity consumers, but what would the effect be if they were solely added to Scottish consumers?
According to DBEI, (the new Dept of Business, Energy and Innovation), electricity consumption in Scotland was 25510 GWh in 2014, the latest year figures are available for.
The cost of ROCs for Scottish renewables would therefore add £28 per MWh to the cost of electricity, equivalent to about 25% on household bills.
Put another way, the cost would amount to £135 for every man, woman and child in Scotland.
Of course, ROCs are not the only extra cost imposed by obsession with renewable energy. Feed in Tariffs are estimated by the CCC to be costing the UK nearly a billion a year, whilst the cost of providing standby capacity will cost at least as much in coming years.
Then there is the huge expense of laying new transmission lines.
The SNP like to proclaim their energy independence, and point to the jobs created and income generated for the country. In reality, these are hollow claims.
Very few permanent jobs result from wind power, and most of the money goes to rich landowners and the banks and (mostly foreign owned) who finance and operate the wind farms.
Perhaps the next time Nicola Sturgeon waffles on about renewable energy, somebody should ask her if she would like her fellow Scots to pay all of the bill themselves.
1) DECC data: