Environmentalists have reiterated calls for half of Scotland’s energy needs to be met by renewables by 2030 as the government prepares to publish a new draft energy strategy.
Energy minister Paul Wheelhouse is due to make a parliamentary statement setting out policies and proposals for the power, transport and electricity sectors.
Last week, the Scottish Government published a draft climate change plan which aims to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 66% by 2032.
Scotland exceeded an interim target of delivering a 42% emissions reduction in 2014 – six years early.
WWF Scotland highlighted that only 13% of Scotland’s total final energy consumption came from renewable sources in 2013.
Senior climate and energy policy officer Gina Hanrahan said: “Research shows clearly that a target of generating 50% of all of Scotland’s energy from renewables by 2030 is necessary and achievable.
“Ministers should adopt this target in its draft energy strategy, sending out a clear message to industry and putting us on course to secure the new jobs, warmer homes, and cleaner air that generating half of all our energy needs from renewables would bring.”
Dr Richard Dixon, director of Friends of the Earth Scotland, said: “The first comprehensive energy strategy for Scotland needs to spell out a bold vision for how our country can use energy much more efficiently and set us irrevocably on course to 100% of our energy from renewables.
“We are already doing very well on electricity but we must build on this, and also transform energy use in transport and heating, getting away from climate-wrecking fossil fuels as soon as we can.
“New nuclear power and fracking must have no place in Scotland’s energy future.
“Scotland is blessed with clean energy resources and we need to harness the huge energies in the wind, waves and sun to build a modern low-carbon economy the equal of any in the world.”
A Scottish Government spokesman said: “The Scottish Government’s support for renewable energy has been a key factor in the remarkable progress the country has made so far through substantially increasing the supply of low carbon electricity and generating sustainable economic growth.
“We have also made available half a billion pounds over the next four years to tackle fuel poverty and improve energy efficiency, made progress on developing a more circular economy – where goods are kept in valuable use for longer – and boosted food waste recycling.
“The draft energy strategy will outline a long-term vision for the future of the energy system in Scotland up to 2050.
“The strategy will consider energy supply and consumption as equal priorities, and demonstrate how to facilitate and capitalise on the transition to a low carbon economy, securing the social and economic benefits for the people and businesses of Scotland.”