Scottish Power – An Unethical and Unsustainable Approach?

Any regular user of Renewables Map will have seen that I am trying to get funding. As a resource used by just about everybody in the industry almost on a daily basis, it clearly satisfies a need. It is unfunded, non profit and with regard to being a charity, well, charities or trusts cost money to set up and time to administer.  Chicken and Egg comes to mind.

But, lets consider Scottish Power’s attitude.

Where a company is clearly using Renewables Map as if it was an internal resource, its time to contact them to enquire about  funding. After all, they are a multinational, I’m an individual, they seem to be expecting me to work for them for free. And no, I’m not a charity supporting multinationals .

This is how much Scottish Power uses Renewables Map: http://www.renewables-map.co.uk/scripts/visit_listing.asp?Status=1&visitor_rec=112

The use is shown over about 6 months, That’s almost 2,000 page views almost 200 during April 2015. They are one of my biggest users.

So a polite email, after a great deal of research to try to find the most suitable contact, to save yourself a good hour or so,  try scottishpowerfoundation@scottishpower.com asking about support for Renewable Map. I included links to pages that show Scottish Power how much they used Renewables Map and general use of the resource.

Coincidentally I get an email from Scottish Power


Hi Simon,

Do you have a list of all windfarms currently in operation in the SPEN Scotland

These regions are Ayrshire and Clyde South, Borders, Central and Fife, Dumfries and Galloway, Edinburgh and Lothians, Glasgow and Clyde North, Lanarkshire.

I am just new to the company so any information you can provide me with would be a great help

Thanks for your time

Kind Regards


Which gets a polite response from me explaining much the same as I say on the website, that I am trying to get Renewables Map to pay for itself and am unwilling to work for free.

The response was equally polite, well done that employee, I hope you go far.


Thanks for your time and I think it is fair enough that you do not want to be used as a unpaid resource when you have obviously put a lot of time and effort into developing this website.

From my own perspective, I feel the tool you have developed is very useful and Scottish Power should take advantage of it. I had been set a task to compile a database very similar to the one you have prepared and I feel what I produced wasn’t as up to date as it could have been.


So, Scottish Power want to create their own version of Renewables Map and of course the simplest way is to copy it!

Actually I have been here before with Ainscough Cranes,  they actually employed a student to copy Renewables Map project by project.

Then I get a response from Scottish Power Foundation


Dear Simon,

Thank-you for your email detailing the website you have created. ScottishPower Foundation as you will see from our web page www.scottishpowerfoundation.com  is an independent charity that supports  5 different categories. However applications for  funding is only available to  charities and not for profit organisations.

 I did pass your e-mail to the relevant department within ScottishPower and the reply received was that it was obvious that Renewable Map is a real passion of yours and while it looks like a good resource, albeit with some notable gaps, this is not something ScottishPower can financially support at this time. We have a range of products which fulfil this purpose in house.

Best wishes in all your future endeavours.

Kind regards,


Yes, Scottish Power,  I know you have a range of similar products in house, the person who is copying Renewables Map to create them has just written to me asking me to make it easier for him to take the data I have collected, to create these internal products!

At least they had the decency to write back.

So, a resource used by every energy company in the UK, Every University, Every Council ….

Pretty soul destroying if this attitude is going to be repeated.  I should note that my concern is not the lack of funding as such, more the blatant criticism of a resource that they use on a daily basis and have clearly used / copied to create their own!

So, Scottish Power, a note.  This is not an ethical approach. Equally it is not sustainable. The whole concept of sustainability is that the resource that is being used remains, it applies to more than just the wind!

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