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Green jobs increase

Published: 6 Apr 2017 12:30
Part of:
Economy, Energy

Employment in low carbon and renewables up by more than a third.

The number of workers in Scotland employed in the low carbon and ‎renewables sector has risen to 58,500 in 2015 - up from an indicative 43,500 employed in 2014.

The low carbon and renewables sector generated a turnover of £10.5 billion, 14% of the total UK sector, the Office of National Statistics numbers show.

In addition:

  • Scotland represented 48% of all UK employment, and 53% of all UK turnover, in onshore wind
  • 33% of all UK employment, and 28% of turnover, in low carbon electricity generation, is in Scotland
  • For low carbon services, Scotland represents 24% of all UK employment, and 26% of turnover.

Minister for Business, Innovation and Energy, Paul Wheelhouse MSP, said:

"These are impressive figures that show how the Scottish Government's focus on decarbonising ‎our energy system has not only allowed us to meet our climate change obligations, and to have done so early, but it has also significantly boosted the Scottish economy.

"They show how large the sector was in 2015 and, with 58,500 employees and a turnover of £10.5 billion‎, the huge opportunity that green energy presents in generating the kind of sustainable growth from which all Scotland benefits.

"It is also telling that these statistics show a sector in rude health, and playing a growing role in our economy, just as the UK Government removed a number of key support mechanisms that have encouraged substantial growth. Today, the sector remains beset by the uncertainty brought about by short-sighted and harmful decisions by UK Ministers and indecision around support in areas such as marine energy, islands wind projects, pumped hydro storage and islands grid connections, which risks investors moving outside the UK.

"While I celebrate the success these figures indicate for Scotland, I am under no illusions whatsoever as to what the wider effect of damaging UK Government decisions, and indecision, may be having on the sector in Scotland and the UK over the longer term and these figures demonstrate the scale of progress that continued, sub-optimal UK policies will put at risk."

Background 

Low carbon economy data

ONS advise that it is important to note that the figures are survey-based estimates and subject to a margin of error, which impacts on how changes should be interpreted. Therefore, it is not possible to directly assess whether or not the observed differences between the 2014 and 2015 estimates are likely to represent statistically significant change. A more complete picture of how the LCRE economy is changing over time will be possible once longer-term trends are available.