THE SNP has been reported to the UK Statistics Authority after party staff handed out leaflets containing a false claim about Scotland’s energy potential.

Earlier this month, pro-unionist think tank, These Islands, found that a Scottish Government claim dating back to 2007 that Scotland holds 25 per cent of Europe’s offshore wind potential was false and had never been true.

The Scottish Government has acknowledged the figure is no longer true and will undertake work to update the figure.

Ministers have repeatedly used the 25% figure but Greens minister Lorna Slater told MSPs earlier this month that it was not true.

However, photos have emerged over the weekend showing SNP staffers handing out ‘Yes’ leaflets which contain the 25% figure.

A senior member of SNP staff shared a post on Twitter celebrating the delivery of leaflets to households in Kirkcaldy, despite the leaflets highlighting the false statistic that Scotland has 25% of Europe’s offshore wind potential.

Scottish LibDems leader, Alex Cole-Hamilton, has written to the chairman of the UK Statistics Authority, Sir Robert Chote.

In his letter, he said: “The leaflets did not appear to be Kirkcaldy-specific so could be delivered across Scotland. It begs the question how many of these leaflets have been printed and continue to be delivered despite it being known that they contain false information.

“Last Friday it was also brought to my attention that this statistic was being used on different leaflets in St Andrews.

“The continued promotion of false information through these fresh deliveries to households is obviously concerning. Can I therefore ask if the UK Statistics Authority intends to issue any advice to the Scottish National Party? How should households which have received this information be informed that it is not in fact true?”

Mr Cole-Hamilton added that “even after the statistic had been debunked”, SNP MP Ronnie Cowan “said in the House of Commons that he would ‘stand by’ the claim that Scotland has 25% of Europe’s offshore wind potential”.

He said: “On the same day, in the Scottish Parliament, Greens minister Lorna Slater refused to confirm that the claim had always been bogus, instead saying that ‘it is out of date’.

“I fully support the expansion of Scotland’s renewable sector and I desperately want to see Scotland fulfil our renewable potential. Nevertheless, the strong case for that is not helped when the Scottish Government and SNP use figures which leave them open to the charge of misleading and misrepresenting.

“I would appreciate input from the UK Statistics Authority as to how this can be corrected and avoided in future.”

An SNP spokesperson said: “While Alex Cole-Hamiliton exposes his low ambitions and his party's skewed priorities by going after a party staffer, the SNP will continue to champion Scotland's huge renewable generation capabilities, which will go on to exceed 40 gigawatts of power."