The Scottish Labour Party’s (not that there is any real political party of that name) has adopted a strongly pro-nuclear policy in line with their London paymasters. The majority of their Scottish MPs did not oppose the latest multi-billion pound renewal of WMDs (aka Trident) under Blair, starkly demonstrating their obedience, even in the face of supposed deeply held beliefs to the contrary. The same holds true for nuclear energy where their London based bosses have deemed nuclear is England‘s future.
Perhaps with their relative lack of natural resources, there may be a case for it. But Scotland with copious renewable resources is a very different kettle of fish. However, despite the obfuscation of the British and their servants to the contrary, there are still decades of oil and gas.
Of course this presents a problem in the British mentality when we are supposed to have all been amalgamated into some uniform vision of Britishness with the same goals, aspirations and needs. However, the truism remains that even after 300 years of forced union, Scotland and England are still very different countries with very different aspirations, ambitions and needs.
Indeed, much to the chagrin of the British, it always will be so, despite ‘Britishness’ drives by the likes of Gordon Brown.
The SNP and Green Party have produced ample information on the renewable potential for the Scottish Nation and the SNP in Government, and is working tirelessly to promote and grow economic growth on the back of this vast swathe of renewable potential with which our nation is blessed.
Carbon capture alone is estimated to have an economic value for storage in the North Sea of 2.9 trillion Euros. (See report here.) And Norway is already moving quickly to capitalize on this for the benefit of their people. So is Alex Salmond with the SNP Government, despite the very limited powers bestowed on our parliament by the British.
Just a few snippets of this potential are:
North Sea Carbon Capture. North Sea carbon capture could store all of Europe’s emissions of CO2 for the next 600 years.
Pentland Firth Tidal Energy. The Pentland Firth was described in one report as the “greatest untapped source of energy Scotland has ever had”. It’s capable of generating enough electricity for every home and business in the country several times over.
North Sea Wind Energy. Turn the North Sea into the equivalent for wind power of what the Gulf of Arabia is for the oil industry.
Clyde Tidal Energy. £250 million Clyde tidal barrier that could revolutionise flood defences in the west of Scotland and produce enough electricity to power every home in Glasgow.
Oil and Gas. We have been told since the 80’s is about to run out. But North Sea oil will last for 100 years.
Despite all of this, Scottish Labour and their Leader Iain Gray, obediently follow the London line and tell us that we must have nuclear energy (and WMD too, apparently). Even the shocking situation in Japan with a second Chernobyl is not enough to prevent them from following their orders. Which brings us to even more recent events when ironically, a ‘leaked’ report highlights us to the fact that Torness had yet another radioactive leak in February this year. And even more ironically, it was just a few weeks before the massive earthquake induced nuclear disaster in Japan happened.
Now, the Nuclear industry (a multi-billion pound industry no doubt, with commensurate palm greasing to spread the spoils) assures us that everything is fine, with no problems and no dangers. However, the Japanese gave the same assurances. And to this end, they commit to maintain such a high standard? How then can another radioactive leak at Torness not be reported, especially given the relative high population that surrounds it?
Why at the least, are the local representatives of the people like East Lothian MSPs, not informed immediately of such incidents? Or, if this is standard practice, why then would local MSPs like Iain Gray be demanding immediate notification of such dangers?
In this case, the situation turns even more surreal in that Iain Gray, whether or not notified of the February leak, turns up for a smiling photo op at Torness, no doubt to further spin his party’s nuclear stance in some benevolent, fuzzy and cuddly light, and of course get ‘brownie points’ from Miliband and his other bosses for following orders. OK. But, why then, did Iain Gray not ask while he was at the site about safety? Did he fall for his own spin? To be at the nuclear site just weeks after yet another radioactive leak, and not be told or to even ask about the safety concerns, is gambling with people’s lives.
Even now when the story is public (ironically via a leak on a leak), where is Iain Gray and how is he going to handle this safety concern on behalf of his constituents or is he again putting his London party political above Scotland and Scottish people’s interests?