Strong public support for offshore wind

Net Zero & Energy Secretary Michael Matheson

OFFSHORE wind has a vital role to play in Scotland’s future, according to a study analysing public perceptions of the renewable energy.

Of those surveyed as part of the study, 92% thought the renewable sector is important to Scotland in terms of its social value, with 89% believing the sector is important in terms of its economic value.

Jointly commissioned by the Scottish Government and NatureScot, the study was undertaken to understand public views of offshore wind farm developments in Scotland.

The world’s largest floating offshore wind leasing round, ScotWind, is forecast to deliver investment of around £25 billion across the Scottish supply chain in the coming years, creating thousands of green jobs, transforming local economies as well as the national economy, and accelerating Scotland’s journey to net zero.

Net Zero & Energy Secretary Michael Matheson visited Aberdeen Bay to tour the European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre and meet with Swedish power company Vattenfall, who will partner one of 17 ScotWind projects.

Mr Matheson said:

“Scotland has the resources, the people and the ambition to become a renewables powerhouse. ScotWind puts us at the forefront of the global development of offshore wind and represents a massive step forward in our net zero transformation.”

“This is a once in a generation opportunity which has to be realised, has to be maximised and has to deliver the environmental and economic benefits for all the people of Scotland.” 

“This study shows that the vast majority of people in Scotland, including our coastal communities who live closest to offshore wind farms, understand and value the diverse benefits that offshore renewable energy presents.”

“Already one of the cheapest forms of energy, it is clear that offshore wind has a vital role to play in delivering on our climate obligations, ensuring our energy security and ensuring a fair and just transition to net zero.”

Chief Executive of NatureScot Francesca Osowska, said:

“Offshore wind energy will play a major role in Scotland’s pathway to net zero. This important study confirms that most coastal communities and visitors are positive about the sector as we embark on this critical transition.” 

“This research will help us plan future developments and guide our advice on the ScotWind proposals, as we work to support the growth in offshore wind generation while safeguarding nature and minimising landscape impacts.”

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