On September 18, 2014, Scottish citizens will vote on whether they want to remain part of the United Kingdom or become their own independent, sovereign state. Edward Davey, the UK’s secretary of state for the Department of Energy and Climate Change, says independence would increase energy bills for Scottish citizens.
The UK government’s analysis shows that energy bills in an independent Scotland would be higher by at least £38 ($64) a year and perhaps by up to £189 ($316) per year, once the full cost of supporting renewables was included.
The government says energy costs for a medium-sized manufacturer could increase by as much as £110,000 ($184,000) per year by 2020 and £608,000 ($1.09 million) if renewables were included.
Davey said that because the single UK energy market is ten times the size of Scotland’s energy market, Scottish energy bills are lower. He listed a range of reasons affecting costs, including the way investment in transmission and distribution networks are currently shared across the whole of the UK, to the way the subsidies for energy distribution in remote rural areas like the Scottish Highlands and Islands are currently paid for by all British consumers not just Scottish bill payers.