Carbon footprint of Scotland's homes falls by a quarter over eight years

Written by Liam Kirkaldy on 4 January 2018 in News

Growth of renewables, improvements in energy efficiency in housing and more environmentally friendly government policies have all helped drive down greenhouse gas emissions generated by Scotland’s homes

Image credit: PA

The carbon footprint of homes across Scotland has fallen by a quarter over the last eight years, according to new analysis by WWF Scotland.

The environmental NGO said the growth of renewables, improvements in energy efficiency in housing and more environmentally friendly government policies have all helped drive down greenhouse gas emissions generated by Scotland’s homes.

The data shows the carbon footprint of each individual’s household energy consumption per capita fell by an average 25.3 per cent across Scotland between 2009 and 2015, with the biggest drop coming from the Highlands, where there was an average fall of 30 per cent.

Renewable electricity generation in the first half of 2017 was up by 17 per cent against the same period in 2016, according to the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy.

Meanwhile renewables generated 54 per cent of Scotland’s gross electricity consumption in 2016, with 24 per cent of total UK renewable electricity based north of the border.

Gina Hanrahan, acting head of policy at WWF Scotland, said: “The Scottish Parliament’s first climate change act put us at the forefront of a global energy transition. These figures show that individuals across Scotland and governments at every level have played a part in cutting the climate damage of our home energy usage.

“When it comes to cutting our emissions, and protecting ourselves, the places and nature we hold dear from the worst effects of climate change, we all need to continue to do our bit.

“This analysis shows Scotland’s low-carbon transition is working, but we must step up our efforts. A new climate change bill this year is an opportunity to double down on our commitments to make our homes more energy efficient, to increase the use of renewables to heat homes, and put Scotland on the path to a zero-carbon future.”

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