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Energy policy for Scottish priorities
More powers on energy regulation would deliver better opportunities for business and a better deal for consumers according to Energy Minister Jim Mather.
The National Conversation paper on energy, published today, highlights ways that more power over energy policy would benefit Scots for future generations.
Energy Minister Jim Mather said:
"Scotland is a world leader in oil and gas and we have the resources, skills, technology and ambition to be a world leader in clean, green energy. Energy is already a key part of our economy yet areas such as energy market regulation and North Sea oil and gas are reserved to the UK Government.
"In our view this places a number of barriers in the way of developing a Scottish energy sector and our interests are often not best represented. For example, Scottish generators pay a much higher charge to transmit electricity than those in the south of England, discriminating against the sustainable development of our vast natural resources. Schemes run by energy suppliers to promote energy efficiency are designed for English, not Scottish, conditions. And over 170 million pounds fossil fuel levy money, ready to be spent on promoting renewables in Scotland, is tied up in a bank account because of inflexible accounting rules.
"The National Conversation paper considers what a Scottish energy market could look like with both increased responsibility and full independence. It sets out how greater power would allow us to make decisions for Scotland's interests. This includes a greater voice at the EU table, more power to reduce fuel poverty and a North Sea tax and regulatory framework to encourage the development of new fields while investing a share of revenue into an oil fund to meet the needs of future generations.
"The Calman Commission considered the case for greater devolution of energy powers and failed to recognise that we are limited in what we can achieve by the status quo. This Government believes that independence, with full responsibility for all international representation, is the best option to enable Scotland to fulfil its full energy potential."