The green energy sector supports more than 43,500 jobs across Scotland, a study has found.
Jobs in the supply chain to renewable energy and low carbon schemes that produce electricity, heating, low emission vehicles and energy from waste and biomass are included in the Office for
National Statistics analysis of 2014, the latest year that figures are available for the industry.
Scottish companies account for 13% of the total UK turnover in the sector, generating £10.7 billion.
The supply chain activity accounted for £5.1 billion, or 47.7%, of total turnover and 21,500 jobs.
Energy minister Paul Wheelhouse said: “The figures reinforce the growing importance of the low carbon industries to the Scottish economy and vindicate the Scottish Government’s support for the sector and the increasingly crucial role it plays within Scotland’s energy mix and the wider economy.
“The Scottish Government strongly supports development of renewable energy and provisional energy statistics show that renewable energy sources accounted for more than 56.7% of gross electricity consumption in Scotland in 2015.
“In welcoming these figures, however, we must remember recent UK Government decisions that continue to create serious uncertainty across the sector.
“Delays in announcing which technologies will be supported in the next round of auctions that support the renewable energy sector, for example, are putting at risk existing investments made, and jobs created, in developing renewable energy projects.”
WWF Scotland director Lang Banks said: “These figures underline the importance of low-carbon businesses to Scotland in helping our economy grow and creating new jobs.
“The leadership that the Scottish Government has shown, through setting ambitious targets for renewable electricity generation, has helped Scotland capture far greater proportion of jobs in key renewable industries in the UK.
“However, with electricity generation now accounting for less than one quarter of Scotland’s climate change emissions, it’s now time to begin to reap the same benefits by increasing the use of renewables in our heat and transport sectors.”