Brian Wilson’s argument (“Energy switch shames Scotland”, 22 August) is all very well, but seems to overlook the fact that the Longannet power station burns coal, the fossil fuel that produces the most carbon dioxide.
Consequently, since the Scottish Government is so keen to reduce Scotland’s greenhouse gas emissions, why did it not heartily endorse the closure?
Why did it not claim that its beloved wind farms produce all the electricity Scotland needs and that there is therefore no need to keep Longannet in operation?
Brian Wilson makes many good points but seems to gloss over the fact that energy policy and the control of Ofgem lies in the gift of Westminster, not Holyrood. Reform is urgently needed not least to address the question as to whether we have a centralised or distributed power generation system.
If the latter then Scottish electricity consumers should not be levied with the costs of Hinkley Point nor European imports. These should be locally ring-fenced in England.
Western Harbour Midway
Murdo Fraser (Letters, 21 August) points out that the Scottish Government is on the side of the power companies in “supporting a massive transfer of wealth from their customers to their own profits”.
In an attempt to justify the grossly regressive transfers associated with the renewables strategy, those who lobby so enthusiastically, along with the Scottish Government, on behalf of the subsidy-hungry energy companies make much of “community benefits”.
However, there is no evidence whatsoever to suggest that these so-called benefits are designed to reach relatively impoverished communities as opposed to the already prosperous.
There are surely far more cost-effective strategies for helping rural communities other than the random consequences of such “benefits”.
So much for the SNP’s social democratic credentials, it appearing that the change in leadership has made no difference to the party’s neoliberal foundations which the First Minister inherited from her predecessor.
Operator ScottishPower announced plans to close coal-fired power station Longannet on 31 March next year, four years ahead of schedule.
The reasons for this closure were give as high carbon taxes and high transmission charges.
In addition, it was confirmed that plans for a new gas-fired power plant at Cockenzie in East Lothian have been scrapped.
However, with no regard for the workforce of 236 people the Scottish Greens and WWF Scotland said the closure was “inevitable” due to air pollution rules and the growth in renewable energy. Why?
Scotland’s CO2 emissions are a paltry 0.15 per cent of global emissions. There are 2,300 coal-fired plants in the world and another 2,177 either being built or planned. Europe is the biggest importer of coal from the US and even “green” Germany is building 19 new coal-fired plants.
The world is rich in coal and shale gas and it will be exploited.
A world without coal and shale gas, as espoused by WWF, Friends of Earth and a ragbag of green zealots, is unrealistic so blame them, and the wind turbine-fixated SNP, when the lights go out this winter.