Scotland to set up state energy company

Scotland’s first minister, Nicola Sturgeon, has confirmed the Scottish government will set up a publicly-owned, nonprofit energy company which will use renewables-generated power, Kallanish Energy reports.

The first minister said Tuesday the company would be created by 2021, selling energy bought wholesale or generated in Scotland, “renewable of course,” as close to cost as possible.

“No shareholders to worry about. No corporate bonuses to consider. It would give people — particularly those on low incomes — more choice and the option of a supplier whose only job is to secure the lowest price for consumers,” she said.

The announcement was welcomed by trade-body Scottish Renewables’ CEO Claire Mack, who believes the public sector has a key role to play in leading the next chapter of Scotland’s energy evolution.

“A publicly-owned energy company could play an important part in adding value to existing support schemes and addressing specific market failures,” she said. “This could, for example, include being a ‘one-stop-shop’ or gateway to accessing public funds, helping communities navigate this often complex and confusing landscape.”

Mack added such an entity could help accelerate the deployment of community renewable energy projects across Scotland by improving access to finance and mobilizing existing public support for the sector.