Readers' Letters: Wind farms obsession killing world’s wildlife
My onlysad moment came with the drone display during the Coronation concert showing various endangered species, the most poignant of which was the whale. Accompanied by that wonderful song, “Don’t you forget about me” it squeezed my heart as it rose into the night sky, a reminder to us all that nature is in crisis.
Yet, the very next day we hear that 36 whales have been washed up on the east coast of the US since the beginning of December. Patrick Moore, a co-founder of Greenpeace, believes it is due to the drilling of foundations for offshore wind farms, interfering with their hearing and so ability to navigate, which is likely to be creating a “death zone” for whales.
At the same time a whale washed up on a beach in East Lothian for the second time in less than a month. How many more will die when the rest of the proposed wind farms in the North Sea and elsewhere are under construction or operational?
We are killing our wildlife, both on land and in the sea, due to our obsession with wind farms and our misguided belief that they will save the planet.
Aileen Jackson, Uplawmoor, East Renfrewshire
Scotland Yard has expressed “regret” over the arrest of six anti-royalist protestors. Republic chief executive Graham Smith delighted in telling the national press that a chief inspector and two officers from the Met had visited him at his home to apologise.
Those arrested had “lock on devices” which could have been used to lock demonstrators to railings or other structures.
The demonstrators claim that these items were to lock on their “Not my King” placards to railings and lampposts. If you believe that, what next? Demonstrators stuck to roads saying they fell whilst carrying a tube of super glue?
Clark Cross, Linlithgow
Humza Yousaf tells us that Scottish politics is more toxic than it has ever been.
Amen to that, but a bit rich coming from someone in the SNP, where demonisation of the “other” has long been a tool in the box (the other in this case being the English/Tories/London).
They promoted this as there seems to be a constituency for it here, hence they hoped to gather votes.
What they never realised is that it released a poison into society, which is dangerous.
William Ballantine, Bo’ness
Jackie Baillie is confused, and confusing. Her article should say that any victory for the Labour Party in the next UK General Election is “very much dependent” on England’s 533 constituencies, not Scotland’s (future) 57 constituencies (Perspective, 9 May).
She says that the Tories and SNP will be “vainly attempting to make the nationalists look somehow relevant to the battle for Westminster”.
But the whole thrust of her article is that SNP-held UK seats are relevant. If the claim on the Scottish Labour website that there is a “Scottish Labour Party” is correct, then any UK seats won by that party would only count for Keir Starmer through a formal coalition, or a confidence and supply agreement, between the parties.
It’s time for Ms Baillie and her boss Anas Sarwar to clarify that Scottish Labour is only an “accounting unit” of the UK Labour Party. Otherwise “Scottish Labour” might be in a “quagmire… of lies about membership”.
E Campbell, Newton Mearns, East Renfrewshire
At long last it seems that the anathema of the SNP is on the wane. Hopefully we can expect some respite from the tartan/woad rallies and anti-UK slogans.
And at the Scottish Parliament – now that the absolute shambles to be found in almost all administrative sectors by the SNP/Green alliance is becoming public – surely an early Holyrood election is a must. The SNP politicians who have already left, or are about to leave office, have left a legacy of economic and administrative mayhem for whosoever is selected to pick up the pieces at Holyrood.
There is no rationale for the Scottish electorate having to wait until the spring of 2026 for elections to the Scottish Parliament to be held. With what can only be described as a “shambles” within the SNP administration, it is surely imperative that elections for Holyrood be called as soon as possible!
Robert I G Scott, Northfield, Ceres, Fife
I agree with Leah Gunn Barrett on England’s attitude towards Scotland before the Treaty (Letters, 9 May). However, might I ask her to read again what she has written from an English perspective, rather than a Scottish one.
She must remember that as far as England was concerned Scotland was a foreign country and it was protecting its trade sources. As she says, Scotland had an alliance with France, England’s enemy. What was it supposed to do?
The Scottish Parliament could see it was not in a good position whichever way you look at it and had to make the difficult decision for its future. And if she would take her blinkers off she would see it was to Scotland’s advantage.
I am not currently domiciled in Scotland, but I was educated in Edinburgh and am well aware of the good and bad in the Treaty.
C Lowson, Fareham, Hants
Leah Gunn Barrett's views on the desirability of Scotland's secession from the UK are very clear. However, she does not mention the necessity of maintaining the Scots’ nutrition or defence or infrastructure or finances after we leave.
Like it or lump it, we'd need to keep worsening poverty at bay without our present Southern compatriots. The Scottish people would surely neither like it nor lump it if their bairns and weans had to go hungry, she will agree.
And why should they accept that deprivation despite their relief at attaining a more fitting constitution?
Charles Wardrop, Perth
NHS Scotland, NHS England, NHS Confederation, NHS Providers, NHS Employers, RCN, BMA, Unite, Unison, Health Secretaries Health Ministers, Health Boards etc, etc – and one could go on.
Is it any wonder there is not enough money left in the public purse to cover reasonable salaries for NHS employees working at the coalface providing care for patients, free at the point of need?
(Dr) S R Wild, Edinburgh
Net zero help
I built a small hydroelectric scheme nine years ago. The UK Government subsidised its output, then after it was built the Scottish Government decided to tax it via rates. Consequently it has been valued three times by Scottish Assesors, somehow leading to a 700 per cent increase in value.
My appeal against the original rateable value is still ongoing after seven years. When complete I will need to appeal against the two other valuations subsequently produced.
Owing to a rule change I must present evidence for an appeal against the latest valuation within two months, but without having appeals from the two earlier valuations settled. I'm wasting time and money on consultants and lawyers writing appeal papers. My latest bill equates to 10 per cent of the scheme turnover and it must be paid despite the farcical delays sorting out the value of this property. More than 200 other small hydro schemes are in the same position.
Net zero and a green economy are supposed to be one of the Scottish Government’s main aims, yet their staggering incompetence makes investment in clean, efficient and landscape-friendly hydro power unattractive.
Jos Seligman, Achanalt, Highland
Unions can picket the entrance to their workplace during strike action, which they are perfectly entitled to do, by law, although non-union members going to their workplace through the picket line may feel uncomfortable/uneasy.
The Orange Order can walk the Kings highway in Scotland to commemorate the English revolution of 1688-1690, which they are perfectly entitled to do by law, although some people may feel uncomfortable/uneasy, especially by the crowds that follow the march.
However, if the Scottish Green Party’s Gillian Mackay’s Abortion Services (Scotland) Bill becomes law and wee Jean (Baptist Church OAP) holds up a banner outside a hospital, on the Kings highway, saying “Protect the Unborn, Support Women” Jean could face six months imprisonment for a first offence.
French Enlightenment philosopher Voltaire was ascribed to have said: “I disapprove of what you say but I will defend to the death your right to say it.” Not so in 21st-century Scotland, cancel culture trumps democracy and human rights. Who’s next?
John Smith, Falkirk
Write to The Scotsman
We welcome your thoughts – NO letters submitted elsewhere, please. Write to [email protected] including name, address and phone number – we won't print full details. Keep letters under 300 words, with no attachments, and avoid 'Letters to the Editor/Readers’ Letters' or similar in your subject line - be specific. If referring to an article, include date, page number and heading.
Subscribe at www.scotsman.com/subscriptions
Want to join the conversation? Please or to comment on this article.