'Record' year for renewable electricity generation

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Renewable electricity generation in Scotland reached record levels last year, according to official data.

Statistics published by the UK government showed an increase of 26% in 2017, compared with the previous year.

The majority of the increase was attributed to greater onshore wind capacity.

The data also showed that by the end of 2017, just over 10GW of installed renewables electricity capacity was operational in Scotland.

It is estimated that the equivalent of 68.1% of gross electricity consumption in Scotland came from renewable sources, up year-on-year by 14.1 percentage points.

Scotland's energy minister, Paul Wheelhouse, said the figures demonstrated the renewables industry was "stronger than ever".

He said: "Scotland's energy strategy recognises and builds on our achievements to date and on our country's capacity for innovation.

"Renewable energy will play a hugely significant role in powering Scotland's future and through the strategy we want to ensure the correct strategic decisions are taken to support this much valued sector of Scotland's economy as it goes from strength to strength."

Claire Mack, chief executive of industry body Scottish Renewables said: "These figures show Scotland as a renewable energy powerhouse, producing more electricity than ever and transferring much of it to markets in the rest of Great Britain, all the time reducing carbon emissions from our power sector."

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