Members of the Solar Trade Association (STA), which speaks on behalf of the UK solar energy industry, have launched a Scottish branch.
STA Scotland will advise and develop policy with the Scottish government and raise awareness of the benefits of solar. It has been backed by a number of prominent figures in the energy industry, including Scottish minister for business, energy and tourism Fergus Ewing.
Mr Ewing said: “The launch of STA Scotland provides a valuable asset for Scotland as we work towards meeting our 2020 renewable energy target.
“STA Scotland will undoubtedly contribute to the Scottish government’s target to generate the equivalent of 100% of Scotland’s electricity demand from renewable sources by 2020. Supporting solar energy is hugely important as it supports our economic strategy to work towards further social equality and the reduction in fuel poverty.”
The STA estimates that there are 25,000 hectares of south-facing commercial rooftops in Scotland that could be put to use to generate clean, home-grown energy.
Forster Energy chairman John Forster has been appointed as the chair of the new body. He has considerable experience in the construction and solar energy industries and his vision is to create a stable and sustainable future for domestic and business energy consumers in Scotland by advancing the availability of solar technologies.
STA analysis has shown that solar panels in Glasgow generate over 90% of the energy the same number of panels would produce in London.