Sunny Scotland to embrace solar energy
Figures showing last month’s sunshine could have powered all the homes in Scotland have sparked calls for more properties to install rooftop panels.
According to Business Green, Scottish homes with solar panels saw more than 100 per cent of their energy needs met by the sun during April, according to data collated by WeatherEnergy, the UK arm of a Europe-wide network of analysts.
The country received enough sunlight to generate 113 per cent of the electricity needs of an average home in Edinburgh, 111 per cent in Aberdeen, 106 per cent in Glasgow, and 104 per cent in Inverness.
Meanwhile, for those homes fitted with solar hot water panels, there was enough sunshine in Edinburgh, Glasgow and Inverness to generate an estimated 100 per cent of an average household’s hot water needs – and 99 per cent for homes in Aberdeen.
“Scotland has long been leading the charge when it comes to wind power,” said Karen Robinson of WeatherEnergy. “However, despite misconceptions, Scotland also has potential for sun-loving renewables too.”
While over 35,000 Scottish homes and 600 business premises currently have solar PV arrays fitted, wind power remains the country’s major renewable electricity source. During April, wind turbines in Scotland generated enough electricity on average to supply the electrical needs of 69 per cent of Scottish households, equivalent to 1.66 million homes.
Prices of solar panels have plunged in the last two years, while efficiency has increased. Tesla’s announcement last week of $3,000 battery to store solar energy could also ensure green electricity on demand for the first time.
“With these sorts of figures, every home or business with a south-facing roof should seriously consider switching on to the full potential of solar power,” said Lang Banks, director of WWF Scotland. “Similarly, there is no reason why Scotland should not be home to commercial-scale solar farms.”
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