The Scottish Government’s target of meeting all its electricity needs from renewable sources by 2020 are likely to be missed by a decade, the organisation representing the offshore oil and gas industry said.
Oil and Gas UK told MSPs yesterday that producing the equivalent of 100% of electricity needs from renewable sources was “more likely by 2030”.
In a report to Holyrood’s Economy, Energy and Tourism Committee, the body’s energy policy manager David Odling and its employment and skills issues adviser Alix Thom said the target “poses considerable difficulties, especially within the timeframe envisaged” with the intermittency of wind power a stumbling block.
The submission claimed with the right investment, the UK Continental Shelf could still satisfy 60% of oil and gas demand in 2020 and added: “We will continue producing some oil and gas well into the 2040s and even beyond 2050.”
Dr Dan Barlow, of environmental group WWF Scotland, accused Oil and Gas UK of a “short-sighted and irresponsible approach”.
Oil and Gas UK’s submission came as a UK Government task force into reducing costs of offshore wind farms called for the urgent installation of more test centres like the one opposed by Donald Trump as he claims it will blight his £750 million golf development.
The Offshore Wind Cost Reduction Task Force’s report was one of two studies published yesterday which argued that a 30% cut in the cost of producing electricity from offshore wind turbines round the UK is possible by the end of this decade.
George Sorial, the Trump organisation’s executive vice-president and counsel, said if the Government was genuinely interested in “cost reduction” it would eliminate wind turbine subsidies that sent millions abroad to the likes of China, where many of the parts were manufactured.
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