As Christine Jardine (Letters, 21 August) and subsequent correspondents (Letters, 22 August) mentioned Scottish Renewables, I write to clarify some of their points.
It is true that during a period of economic downturn the renewables industry has delivered around £2.8 billion of much-needed capital investment into Scotland, which has helped grow the supply chain, secured the future of many Scottish companies and supported more than 11,000 jobs across the country.
This fact should be celebrated.
There is no conflict at all between the £1.6bn invested in onshore wind and the level of investment in other important but less mature technologies like offshore wind or wave and tidal.
Indeed, it is this investment in onshore wind development that underwrites the necessary investment in grid connections that will eventually benefit these other technologies.
It is not an either/or – Scotland and the UK need onshore and offshore wind, and marine energy, and will need other forms of generation for many years to come.
There is also no evidence to show wind farms have a significant impact on Scotland’s tourism, a fact clearly illustrated by the 2011 VisitScotland Wind Farm Consumer Research report, which showed that 83 per cent of those surveyed said a wind farm would not affect their decision about where to stay when on a holiday in Scotland.
However, what the evidence does suggest is that the 13,750GWh of renewable electricity generated in Scotland in 2011, over half of which came from onshore wind, could have displaced as much as 8 million tonnes of carbon dioxide from fossil fuel generating stations, thus helping Scotland and the UK meet their climate change goals.
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Weather for Edinburgh
Thursday 20 June 2013
Temperature: 12 C to 21 C
Wind Speed: 7 mph
Wind direction: South east
Temperature: 11 C to 19 C
Wind Speed: 12 mph
Wind direction: West