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Guide to Energy Masterplanning


This Guide has been produced by Scottish Enterprise and Ramboll Energy to introduce the key concepts of energy masterplanning. Whilst the focus is Scotland, the general approach is applicable to all locations. It is aimed principally at organisations that may be coordinating area-wide decarbonisation efforts, although stand-alone low carbon energy projects can also benefit through consideration of the wider energy system approach provided. The overarching objective of the Guide is to support the development of creative low carbon energy solutions that make efficient use of local energy resources and support a holistic energy system design.


This guide provides an update to a previous version focused on decentralised energy masterplanning, produced by Scottish Enterprise in 2015. The methodology consisted of desk research.


Section 1 sets out the national and local policy context driving the need for low carbon energy masterplanning, including the policy levers that can be used to support the creation and delivery of plans. Section 2 considers organisations that might create energy masterplans and their drivers for doing so. Section 3 explores the reasons for energy masterplanning and the benefits that it can provide. Section 4 sets out the key steps for creating an energy masterplan, including what information is publicly available, additional data that needs to be collected, useful tools, and a description of how these elements can be incorporated into a coherent energy masterplan. Section 5 draws on best practice examples and explains how energy masterplanning assists in the development and delivery of economically viable, sustainable projects.


The required pace and scale of change demands that we move beyond stand-alone low carbon projects to a wider energy systems approach that creates more efficient and integrated solutions. This guide to Energy Masterplanning will assist developers and local authorities to plan for this approach, provide for ‘future proofing’ and make use of energy more efficiently; ensuring that the most affordable and resilient solution is identified.

Author Ramboll
Published Year 2021
Report Type Research
  • Sectors
  • Equity
    Sustainable development