Scottish Power has announced that it will generate all of its electricity from wind power instead of coal and gas in the future, becoming the first major UK energy company to make such a shift.
The move, announced on Tuesday morning, came as a consequence of the firm selling the rest of its conventional energy generation business to Drax for £702m.
Scottish Power has closed all of its coal plants over the past decade, so the sale of its remaining gas and hydro stations means it now generates 100 per cent of its electricity from wind power.
The sale involved four power stations in England, including Damhead Creek in Kent, Rye House in Hertfordshire, Shoreham in West Sussex and Blackburn Mill in Blackburn.
Also included were two Scottish hydro-electric power schemes in Lanarkshire and Galloway and the Daldowie Fuel Plant, one of the largest sludge drying centres in Europe. Scottish Power said it currently produced enough wind power to feed 1.2m homes and planned to invest £5.2bn over four years to more than double its renewables capacity.
“This is a pivotal shift for Scottish Power as we realise a long term ambition,” said the company’s chief executive Keith Anderson.
“We are leaving carbon generation behind for a renewable future powered by cheaper green energy.
“From today we can focus solely on making energy generation cheaper, cutting carbon quicker, building smart grids and connecting customers to renewable [sources].”
Scottish Power currently has 2,700 megawatts (MW) of wind power capacity operating or under construction in the UK, with planned future projects capable of generating more than 3,000MW.
Ignacio Galan, the chief executive of the firm’s Spanish owner Iberdrola, said energy companies “must be part of the solution to climate change”.
This story first appeared in our sister paper The I