FMQs: National energy company vital for recovery say Greens

Nicola Sturgeon has been challenged by the Scottish Greens to press ahead with the creation of a national energy company “vital” to Scotland’s economic recovery from the pandemic.

Lorna Slater called on the government to move ahead with plans for a national energy company

At First Minister’s Questions, Greens co-leader Lorna Slater said analysis by the Trades Union Congress (TUC) revealed the UK is “lagging behind” other G7 countries in investing in a green recovery.

She urged Ms Sturgeon to push for green investment from the UK government at the forthcoming four-nation summit, and to “move ahead” with the creation of a National Energy Company.

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“Scotland could be a world leader in marine renewable energy but the industry was undermined by the Tory Government when they scrapped essential tariff support in 2015. Since then, no new tidal energy projects have come forward,” she said.

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“The Scottish Government has long committed to a public energy company which could provide tidal energy with the demand it needs, but it needs to get going. Tidal energy technology was developed in Scotland. We are the world experts in it, but if we don’t act now we will lose this industry to other countries.”

Ms Sturgeon said she would raise the issue of investment at the summit and added: “We will take forward a range of different ways in which we’re going to support the vast renewable potential Scotland has, and I hope these issues will feature in the discussions we have about the co-operation between our parties over the course of this parliament.

She said Scotland was a world leader in renewable energy but more needed to be done “to properly seize the benefits for the economy that come with that.”

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