11 Apr 2014
Scotland now hosts more than 50 per cent of the UK’s onshore wind turbines, it has been revealed.
Despite accounting for less than 10 per cent of the population, there are currently 2,315 operating turbines north of the border.
Latest analysis carried out this morning has shown a total of 4,350 in the whole UK, meaning Scotland is more than pulling its weight with the renewable energy burden.
And in addition to the windfarms already up-and-running, another 405 turbines are under construction.
Local authorities and the Scottish Government have already given consent to a further 1,162 blades, meaning the Scottish countryside could be swamped with windfarm development before long.
The statistics contradict comments from the SNP that it is ready to cool its obsession with onshore wind energy.
The figures, from Renewable UK, do not even take into account those windfarms which are making their way through the planning process.
Earlier this year the Scottish Conservatives revealed that more than five million trees had been cut down to make way for turbines across Scotland.
The party has called for a moratorium to allow overwhelmed council planning departments space to breathe amid the influx of applications, many of which have been encouraged by the SNP’s renewable energy policy.
Scottish Conservative energy spokesman Murdo Fraser MSP said:
“It’s quite incredible to think that, despite only consuming less than 10 per cent of the UK’s energy, Scotland has to suffer 50 per cent of the wind turbines.
“This is a direct result of the SNP waving windfarm developers through, and outmuscling local councils when it comes to the decision-making process.
“What is more worrying is these figures do not even take into account windfarms which are under construction, given consent, or are in the midst of the planning process.
“There is a place for windfarms, but the Scottish Government has allowed this to get completely out of control.
“It is ludicrous to put such emphasis on intermittent and unreliable energy sources which can damage the landscape for thousands of residents and tourists.”
The website containing the up-to-date statistics is here. To see the current situation, check the “onshore” and “operational” in the relevant boxes:
The Scottish Conservatives have repeatedly raised concerns about the SNP’s approach to onshore windfarms: