Your report (29 March) that every home in Scotland could have been powered by green power swallowed the renewable sector’s public relations’ pitch, hook line and sinker.
Of course, if you build thousands of wind generators there will be times in the year when they will produce a lot of expensive electricity.
However, your graph accompanying the article reinforced the point that the amount of electricity generated by wind farms has fluctuated from around 1,500 Gigawatt hours to 2,500 GWh within the second quarter of 2012 alone. In other words, not one house in Scotland could have relied on renewable output for all its electricity.
If we are to have security of electricity supplies we have to build new gas or nuclear power stations that can meet all our electricity needs when the wind does not blow. All this means is that the Scottish consumer is faced with funding not only the costs of wind power but also the costs of a secure supply of electricity, which has to provide a 100 per cent back-up for the many weeks when the blades fail to turn.
My CALCULATIONS show last year’s renewable energy (your report, 29 March) saved us in Russian gas imports approximately 50 per cent of the total exports from whisky. In a year or two that will be 100 per cent.
In the future, Scotland and the UK will have to pay its way in the world once all its industries, castles and football clubs are sold off to pay for current imports and debts. Then it will be a pity to use all the proceeds of our most famous export to pay for Russian gas while the wind still blows free.
West Acres Drive
UK GOVERNMENT ministers – Business Secretary Vince Cable, Scottish Secretary Michael Moore and Energy Secretary Ed Davey – who headed to Aberdeen this week to talk up the growing boom in the North Sea oil and gas industry, have clearly not read the No campaign script (your report, 28 March).
No campaign politicians have repeatedly tried to play down growth in the sector and underplay the potential impact that Scotland having control over its own resources could have. However, Vince Cable conceded in a radio interview that trade organisation Oil and Gas UK “expects production to expand”.
The visit to Aberdeen comes as BP announces a £330 million programme of investment in oil exploration West of Shetland, underlining the fact that the industry is anticipating significant growth. Investment in the UK continental shelf is expected to rise to a record £14 billion in 2013, up from £11.4bn in 2012.
This is deeply damaging for anti-independence politicians who have made talking down the North Sea oil and gas sector one of the key planks of their scaremongering campaign.
It smacks of hypocrisy for Vince Cable to talk up the oil and gas sector when addressing the industry, but to trash its prospects when talking to voters.