MORE than £2 billion is needed for the Scottish Government to deliver on its plans for a just transition, a new report has found.

In 2022, 20 offshore wind projects received agreements from Crown Estate Scotland – a self-financing public corporation of the Scottish Government – as part of the ScotWind Leasing round, with a combined potential capacity of almost 30 GW of offshore wind.

Yet a new report from the Scottish Trades Union Congress (STUC), Scotland’s largest trade union body, released on Tuesday found that of the 19 sites which would be needed to make the components required, none have been built, with two fabrication sites currently in development.

The National:

The report, researched by Transition Economics and presented at the STUC Annual Congress in Dundee, found that current public investment in Scotland’s domestic supply chains for offshore wind stands at just £600m, equivalent to less than a quarter (13-23%) of the £2.5bn-£4.5bn which is needed.

The 30 GW of energy which could be produced by these wind farms – if delivered in full – is the equivalent of nine years’ worth of power for every home in Scotland.

READ MORE: Scottish renewable electricity capacity grew 10 per cent in 2023

If ScotWind commitments are delivered at the scale committed to, this could potentially deliver 25,000 jobs, and is projected to bring in future profits of between £7bn-£29bn.

The general secretary of the STUC, Roz Foyer (below), criticised government rhetoric around investment and jobs from ScotWind as “little more than hot-air".

The National: Roz Foyer, general secretary of the STUC, pictured at the STUC's new offices in Bridgeton, Glasgow
Photograph by Colin Mearns, Jan 22, 2022The latest figures come as the STUC Congress is set to debate the need for an industrial strategy from the Scottish Government to ensure the funding is secured.

Alongside this strategy, the STUC also called for the development of a “publicly-owned Scottish energy champion” to ensure a just transition from oil and gas to renewables can be achieved.

READ MORE: Regulator warns it could block oil and gas projects if they do not cut emissions

Commenting, STUC General Secretary Roz Foyer said: “The promises of ScotWind will be little more than hot-air if both the Scottish and UK Government’s aren’t prepared to stump up the cash to secure the jobs we know we can build.

“Our ScotWind report released today, the latest in our analysis of Scotland’s green energy economy, shows that politicians have their head in the sands with a £2 billion gap in the funding needed to build our domestic supply chain.

“In order to reach the target of 25,000 jobs, Scotland needs a minimum of 19 manufacturing sites. We currently have zero. That’s a chronic indication of the political rhetoric clearly not matching the action needed to do what is right by our energy workers.

“We can secure a truly just transition for workers in the sector but only if the politicians follow the necessary next steps set out in this report. Workers are ready to play their part. Politicians should do likewise.”