Sign of the times

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Scientists and economists will welcome the news that shale gas will account for at least half the UK energy mix in the next decade, resulting in much lower energy bills. British and EU firms in the steel and chemical industries already warn they cannot compete with US groups because their shale-based energy costs are five times cheaper.

But Scotland has vast reserves and much thicker seams than the US, strategically placed in the Central Lowlands and Fife, meaning real jobs in these industrial graveyards. Sally Foster-Fulton, convener of the Kirk’s all-singing, all-dancing Church and Society Council, is worried this sends the wrong signal to the latest global-warming jolly in Doha (Letters, 5 
December). Fear not, dear lady, the “wrong signal” is that the US – in contrast the green Europe – has slashed its energy prices and cut its emissions back to 1990 levels by using shale gas.

(Dr) John Cameron

Howard Place

St Andrews