Wind Powered Election Promises
ALEX Salmond launched his bid for a second term in office yesterday, by declaring Scotland can be powered entirely by renewable energy in just nine years, provoking claims from one industry leader that he was living in "cloud cuckoo land".
The First Minister said Scotland could, by 2020, produce twice the electricity it required for domestic use, adding that he would pave the way for an explosion in new wind, wave, hydro and tidal schemes that would alone be enough to meet the country's needs.
The coming boom, he said, would also lead to the creation of 130,000 jobs in the low-carbon sector, leaving Scotland able to sell vast reserves of surplus electricity to the rest of the UK.
nder the plans, Mr Salmond envisages wave and tidal power, which now produce 2.35 megawatts of power, would produce 800 MW by 2020. He also said he expected Scotland to be producing 12,000 MW of wind power by 2020, up from 2,575 MW at present.
If achieved, his target could transform Scotland's landscape. Of the 12,000 MW of wind power he envisages, 7,000 MW would come from onshore. A conservative estimate suggests this would require a total of 2,800 onshore wind turbines, double the 1,400 currently installed.
Mr Salmond said a further 5,000 MW would come from sea-based wind. Currently, there are only 62 operational offshore turbines, producing 190MW.
Is he a fool or a knave to say such things?