The greatest risk to Scottish renewables does not come from a Westminster government insufficiently committed to net-zero. It comes from a Holyrood government with one overriding priority: the breakup of the United Kingdom.

Cop26 may have been a missed opportunity for the planet, but Nicola Sturgeon did not miss the opportunity to rest on her laurels. In a widely shared video, the First Minister said of Scotland: “We’ve virtually decarbonised our electricity supply. Just short of 100% of all the electricity we use is from renewable sources.”1

Just one problem: this wasn’t true. According to the Scottish Government’s own data, 56% of the electricity used in Scotland was from renewable sources in 2020, with the rest generated by nuclear and gas plants.2

Scottish renewables are a genuine success story, but they are a United Kingdom success story. Outside of the UK, Scotland could not have achieved its current scale in renewables. And without Scotland, the UK would not have made such rapid progress in reducing emissions.

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