AN academic has said that Scotland’s renewable energy potential is being impacted by the “limits of devolution”.

Dr Daria Shapovalova, a senior lecturer in Energy Law at Aberdeen University, told the Sunday National that while there is a lot of good leadership in the energy sector in Scotland, we have to “acknowledge our limitations” in terms of devolution.

She added that Scotland also has to grapple with “how many decisions we can make on our own” when it comes to energy.

Asked what those limits are, the academic said that the “obvious one" is that Scotland can’t make its own international agreements.

“Any kind of international agreement and international collaboration is quite politically sensitive,” she said.

“And I think we've seen that in the past few months.”

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It comes after Humza Yousaf briefly met Recep Tayyip Erdogan during the COP28 UN climate summit in Dubai last year – drawing the ire of the Foreign Office due to a UK official not being present.

Foreign Minister David Cameron then threatened to withdraw support for several Scottish Government international development offices based in Foreign Office embassies.

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Scottish Secretary Alister Jack was also enraged about the meeting at a Scottish Affairs Committee in December last year, claiming the meeting with Erdogan was not the first “offence” by Scottish ministers and criticised them for not following "rules".

Shapovalova said that this pressure was “definitely even around” Scotland’s presence at Arctic conferences and other international events.

She said, however, that despite the challenges with devolution, the “leadership” Scotland has provided by facilitating the energy transition in the past few years has been “strong”.

“And I think that the necessary policy elements are already in place, at least in a draft form,” she added.

“So I think the only thing that we need to be doing is moving forward in not just adopting the policy framework, but moving faster in developing these new green industries.”