The “biggest ever” support scheme for green renewable energy projects has opened for applications.
The scheme, launched by the UK Government on Monday, will make £285m a year available across the UK and “help build the next generation of Scotland’s green energy projects”.
Renewable energy projects in Scotland can now bid for funding in the fourth round of the Contracts for Difference (CfD) scheme, which is aiming to secure 12GW of electricity capacity across Great Britain.
The government say the additional offshore wind capacity resulting from the funding could generate enough electricity equivalent to powering around eight million homes.
Scottish Secretary Alister Jack has welcomed the “vital investment”.
He said: “This surge of UK Government investment into renewables is not only vital for the future of our planet, it will protect jobs in Scotland, create new ones and encourage growth.
“While we support the oil and gas industry in its transition away from fossil fuels, it’s heartening to see the renewable energy sector in Scotland evolving.”
A total budget of £285m has been allocated, with £200m available for offshore wind, £75m for emerging technologies, such as remote island wind, tidal stream and floating offshore wind, and £10m for established technologies, such as solar and onshore wind.
Within emerging technologies, £24m a year has been ringfenced for floating offshore wind projects and £20m initially set aside for tidal stream projects.
UK Business and Energy Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng said: “With potential bidders from Islay to Inverness and St Andrews to Stornoway, this new funding will bring forward exciting new renewable technologies and push existing success stories to new heights as we support the Scottish oil and gas industry’s transition to green energy.”
The CfD fourth allocation round will close to applications on January 14 2022, with the final results of the auction expected to be announced in spring-summer 2022.
CfDs are 15-year private law contracts between renewable electricity generators and the Low Carbon Contracts Company (LCCC), a government-owned company that manages them at arm’s length from government.