The regional economic impacts of offshore wind energy developments in Scotland

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The Scottish electricity network is currently in a transition towards becoming 100% renewable. Offshore wind, due to a large natural resource, is expected to be key in this transition. In addition to the anticipated environmental benefits, increasing the share of offshore wind is expected to bring economic benefits to the region. In this study two multi-sectoral modelling methodologies – Input-Output (IO) and Computable General Equilibrium (CGE) – are used to measure the potential economic impacts on Scotland arising from both the construction and operation of the planned increase offshore wind capacity between 2018 and 2025, with comparisons made between models and development stages. With the focus on the benefits to the Scottish economy it is important to focus only on expenditures within Scotland. Found using both IO and (forward-looking and myopic) CGE modelling techniques, is increasing offshore wind capacity raises both employment and Gross Value Added (GVA) with the magnitude and timing of this change critically depend on model type and closure. This is the first – to the author's knowledge – of a Scottish specific modelling which helps policy makers understand those elements which could affect the possible economic success of current policy towards offshore wind.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)148-159
Number of pages12
JournalRenewable Energy
Early online date27 Jun 2020
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2020


  • offshore wind energy
  • input-output
  • computable general equilibrium modelling


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