Unite the Union

Unite the Union

September 07, 2007 08:07 ET

Scotland Deserves More Than Green Energy Day Gimmicks

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM--(Marketwire - Sept. 7, 2007) - Unite, Scotland's biggest union will today brand the SNP's Green Energy Day as a dangerous gimmick which could threaten the country's future energy needs.

When the SNP were elected in May, Alex Salmond indicated he would seek consensus on policy matters. The energy supply for this country must be one of the main issues for consensus. Informed debate and a public consultation is absolutely vital if we are to protect this country's future energy needs.

Unite Regional Secretary, John Quigley says,
"Unite supports a renewable component in any future energy mix and obviously we welcome the opening of the Crystal Rig wind farm in East Lothian. However, we believe the SNP and the First Minster need a reality check.

Over the last 50 years nuclear energy has supplied up to 50% of Scotland's energy needs. The safety record of nuclear energy in Scotland is excellent. If we are to enjoy security of supply and tackle climate change, then we must continue to support a balanced energy policy including the nuclear component."

Renewable energy, especially wind farms are seemingly regarded as an alternative to nuclear energy. But on a generous assessment wind power produces only 30% of capacity, it's also heavily subsidised and requires 100% back up. No sensible analyst will suggest it is a core source of energy supply.

Therefore, Scotland requires a core source of generation, at present coal, gas and nuclear are the only realistic core sources we have, Unite recognises the contribution from Hydro Power but it is limited.

Gas is a finite source and in the international market with diminishing supplies it would be folly to depend on gas for our core source.
Because of c02 emissions coal is not an option until we have a commercially viable clean coal demonstration plant. To dismiss nuclear energy which produces no c02 emissions would be ridiculous. It would put our country's energy supplies at risk.

Mr Quigley continued,
"If the First Minister and his Government are serious about consensus politics, he should visit the local communities in Scotland who recognise the benefits of nuclear power to the economy and to a secure supply of energy. Not to mention the highly skilled jobs which the SNP's present policy will destroy. Scotland deserves better than gimmicks such as Green Energy Day. "

Contact Information

  • Ciaran Naidoo
    07768 931 315 or 0207 420 8931