THE CEO of Scottish Renewables has said that it is “hard not to be despondent” about the scale of European funding Scotland misses out on after Brexit.

Speaking after attending Ocean Energy Europe on Thursday – a conference for Europe’s ocean energy sector – Claire Mack said in a post on LinkedIn that she had left feeling “proud to be Scottish”.

The head of Scotland's renewable energy industry trade body highlighted examples of Scottish innovation, including Edinburgh-based Mocean Energy, which she said was “moving fast on getting a world-leading wave device up to commercial deployment stage”.

It was announced in September that the UK is to return to the EU’s £85 billion Horizon science research programme following a post-Brexit row.

The move was immediately welcomed by scientists, after years of warnings that UK researchers have been missing out on collaboration with colleagues in the EU.

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Mack said that while “strides were made” to get the UK back into Horizon, it was “hard not to be despondent at the size and scale of what we are missing out on in terms of European funding and collaboration” – including the EU Innovation Fund, one of the world's largest funding programmes for innovative low-carbon technologies.

“So, what can we do?” Mack asked.

She went on: “Looking through the Scotland lens, we’re still the first place in the world where marine technology demonstrates enviable credibility – it’s why the rest of the world are catching on fast.

“Next is getting scale and Scotland has the upper hand here. We have an abundance of lessons learned and are sharing to help that scale grow. We’ve got integrated marine energy with more to come.

“Oil and Gas are taking stakes in projects and keen to look at options to clean up processes - a huge step in Scotland and the world’s energy transition story due to the scale of demand.”