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Scottish government sets big goals for renewable energy

Armando Ferrari | Cultura | Getty Images

Scotland has set itself the target of using renewable sources of power to provide half the energy needed for its heat, transport and electricity needs by 2030.

The government's draft Scottish Energy Strategy, published on Tuesday, sets out what it describes as a vision for 2050 where Scotland is home to a "modern, integrated energy system that delivers reliable, low carbon energy at affordable prices to consumers in all parts of Scotland."

Together with a draft Climate Change Plan, the draft Energy Strategy outlines a strategic framework to enable Scotland's transition to a low carbon future.

"The decisions we make about Scotland's energy future are among the most important choices we face as a society," Paul Wheelhouse, Scotland's minister for business, innovation and energy, said in a statement.

"Achieving our vision is also crucial to efforts to tackle fuel poverty and to preventing the damaging effects of climate change, as part of the global community's fight to limit global temperature increases to 2 degrees Celsius or less," Wheelhouse went on to add.

The new strategy was welcomed by WWF Scotland.

"A transformation in how we heat our homes and offices, how we travel to work and school, and how we power our industries will generate many social and economic benefits," Gina Hanrahan, WWF Scotland's climate and energy policy officer, said.

"Research shows that generating half of our energy from renewables by 2030 is both necessary and achievable," Hanrahan added.