Nuclear attack backfires on Labour
Claims by Labour’s energy spokesperson Tom Greatrex – questioning the SNP’s ongoing opposition to dangerous and unnecessary new nuclear power stations – have been rubbished and rebounded on Scottish Labour leader Johann Lamont.
SNP Westminster Energy spokesperson Mike Weir MP dismissed Mr Greatrex’s claims at the TUC conference and challenged Scottish Labour leader Johann Lamont to clarify her party’s position on new nuclear.
# In 2007 Labour opposed new nuclear while waste disposal problems remain unresolved.
# In a debate on 5 October 2011, Labour’s Infrastructure and Capital Investment spokesperson Richard Baker claimed: “Our party’s position has not been to rule in new nuclear power for the future of Scotland’s energy production and consumption, but neither have we ruled it out.”
# Mr Greatrex now appears to be cheerleading for the nuclear industry.
Mr Weir said:
“Tom Greatrex’s attack is not only rubbish but it has rebounded on Scottish Labour whose position on new nuclear is unknown. Tom Greatrex has thrown down the gauntlet and it has landed on Johann Lamont’s desk – this is yet another issue on which the Labour leader needs to make her position known.
“Right now Scotland is capitalising on our vast clean, green energy potential, instead of following Labour and the Tories blind faith in costly, dangerous and unreliable nuclear power. Labour must recognise that there is no appetite and absolutely no need for new nuclear power stations north of the Border – with their horrendous waste problems and soaring decommissioning costs.
“A majority of MSPs across a range of parties oppose new nuclear power, and Labour themselves are split from top to bottom in Scotland on the issue.
“The reality is that the UK Government is bogged down in nuclear planning issues and making no progress and creating no jobs, while the Scottish Government is getting on with the job of investing in the technologies of the future, and supporting thousands of energy jobs.
“Scotland is ahead of the game and ahead of our targets on renewables – which is good news for Scotland's economy. And we are making an international contribution to tackling global warming with our world-leading Climate Change Act – which is great news for the environment.
“With 25 per cent of Europe’s wind energy potential, including massive off shore as well as onshore wind power capabilities, a quarter of Europe’s tidal resource, and huge potential from clean coal and carbon capture, these are the real economic and employment opportunities for Scotland.
“The view of the Scottish Government and indeed Scotland’s Parliament as a whole on nuclear is absolutely clear. Scotland simply doesn’t want or need dangerous and unnecessary new nuclear power stations, with soaring decommissioning costs and the unresolved problem of storage of radioactive waste that burdens future generations for thousands of years.”