Renewable energy projects in Scotland in 2015 ploughed more than £10m back into local communities.

Some 154 projects are on the community renewables register, and target for community or local ownership of renewables was met five years early, with 508MW of capacity now operational, exceeding the 2020 500MW goal.

Energy Minister Fergus Ewing (pictured sat on rock) said: “2015 was a bumper year for community energy and 2016 can be just as exciting.

“Over £10m a year from onshore renewable projects is now going straight back into people’s hands, empowering people to make the most of their own local resources.

“Benefits ploughed back into communities can fund all sorts of schemes, from energy efficiency and fuel poverty programmes to befriending projects which reduce isolation for elderly people.

“Scotland leads the way in the UK on local and community ownership of renewable energy and we are providing the best possible environment to help ambitious community groups reap the benefits.

“I want to see even more communities take decisions about their local energy system and to have an economic stake in new developments.”

Image: reNEWS