Comment posted Major environmental groups seriously compromised by wind developers’ cash by Tim McIntyre.
To say that the environmental charities are receiving funding from the ‘wind industry’ is a simplification.
Both Scottish Power and SSE have substantial portfolios of fossil-fuelled generation plant. SP (of which SPR is a sister company under the Iberdrola group) is in the process of planning to replace the life-expired Cockenzie coal station with a CCGT plant.
In any case, WWF, FoE and RSPB are environmental lobby groups with their own agendas which they are free to choose. They are also free to accept funding from whoever they wish. If they need to tailor their agendas to suit their funders, or vice-versa, so be it – that’s in the nature of lobbying. We as the public are free to believe or dismiss what they say, and so are politicians.
Does anyone expect to get unbiased information from environmental lobbyists any more than they would from, say, a fossil-fuel industry lobby? Surely not – so what exactly is the problem?
Tim McIntyre also commented
- Malcolm – Doc may have a ballpark answer, but I think the truth is that we don’t know – CCS has not yet been proven on a commercial scale, so the costs are subject to huge uncertainty.
Unfortunately CCS does have one big downside which is that it substantially depresses the overall generation efficiency, due to the large energy cost of compressing and pumping the CO2 underground. It might have a part to play, but it will mean we need to burn a good deal more of the fossil fuel in order to get the same amount of electricity.
- One exception does not disprove the rule, Malcolm. This doesn’t even appear to be an exception – they had to provide anemometer data from another nearby site, which was presumably considered to be suitably representative.
Just more e-petition spamming, I’m afraid.
You might get an apology from Doc, but I wouldn’t hold your breath
- Karl – reading between the lines, I sense that the government are quite keen to prolong the life of the two existing nukes, so the question of how to replace them can be held off for another 5 years (at least).
That may seem a bit cynical; to be fair, there are, unavoidably, big and rapid changes to come on energy generation, CCS, storage, demand management etc. – much of it very uncertain still, so a few more years of development will allow a better picture to emerge on how to replace them – that includes possible future developments in nuclear technology of course.
- Hunterston B and Torness nuclear power stations are due to close in 2016 and 2023 respectively. However, they might well not. All the Scottish Government’s emphasis in its energy policy is on ‘no NEW nuclear’
The Government states in its draft Electricity Generation Policy Statement that it expects EDF (the, er, foreign owner of Scotland’s nuclear plants) to apply for a life-extension of a minimum of five years for each of these plants. It goes on to clearly state that it would have no opposition to this, provided that the independent nuclear regulator is satisfied that it can be done safely.
This would mean we maintain a sizeable nuclear generation capacity in Scotland well into the next decade, to allow time for the renewables ‘revolution’ to mature and prove itself able to take over in the longer term. As such, it would seem to be a sensible and prudent approach, and perhaps a Holyrood policy that even Malcolm could approve of?
The policy statement can be read at:-
Sorry – this was supposed to appear under comment 38 Dr Douglas below!
- Hmm, seems to be a number of ‘antis’ and climate deniers parachuting in today…
Recent comments by Tim McIntyre
- New land reform proposals could intervene in inheritance of family home
Richard, I appreciate the point about property rights, the importance of which I am not trying to diminish, but why should these extend to total control of land & buildings from beyond the grave? Surely the concept of property rights should apply also to those left living, who have a reasonable expectation of a fair share in their parents’ inheritance.
It is a very long-established principle in Scots Law that a will which does not fairly distribute property amongst offspring is contestable in court, and all this current proposal says is that land & buildings should not be exempted from this requirement. Again, I can’t see what the problem is with that.
- New land reform proposals could intervene in inheritance of family home
The proposal is to remove the distinction between ‘moveable’ (possessions) and ‘heritable’ (land & buildings) property for the purposes of succession – something which the Law Society have long called for. This distinction is no more than a wildly anachronistic relic from the feudal era, does not exist in other European countries, and has no defensible place in 21st century Scotland.
In practice the change would mean that the children & spouse/partner of the deceased would be given the legal right to claim a proportion of ALL of the estate, and not just the moveable part (as at present).
So it’s not really the state ‘intervening’ as characterised here, but rather the transfer of some rights from the dead to the living, and the legally-mandated fair sharing out of property of all types. Not quite clear why anyone would object to it, really.
- Swinney revaluation of business rates puts Lorn Arc TIF project at risk
As you make clear with your ‘wet finger in the wind’ metaphor, the margin of error in any prediction of incremental increases in NDR resulting from TIF investments must surely be so large as to make a change of 5% insignificant, at least as far as the predictions are concerned?
I can’t see how you can square a description of the process as an ‘almighty punt’ (which it clearly is) with use of words like ‘calibration’ and quibbles over a few percentage points of income.
It’s also quite possible (conventional economic wisdom would suggest) that a that reduction of 5% in the business rates burden could encourage MORE businesses to set up within the TIF zones, and thereby create more income rather than less…
- Baillie scores off a penalty as Swinney wisely back tracks on stamp duty
“When needs she must, yet faintly then she praises,
Somewhat the deed, much more the means she raises:
So marreth what she makes, and praising most, dispraises.”
- (with apologies to) Phineas Fletcher
Of course it’s all moot, because the entire weight of the article rests on the premise contained in the first sentence, which is, er, entirely false. Ouch.
The Scottish Government’s Land & Buildings Transaction Tax received Royal Assent in July 2013, due for introduction in April 2015. John Swinney announced the rates and bands in October 2014 following several rounds of public consultation.
Chancellor George Osborne announced two months LATER, in his autumn statement, that he was reforming Stamp Duty, without any prior notice or consultation, to a fairly close imitation of LBTT – which as Swinney himself notes is the ‘sincerest form of flattery’.
I’m afraid Jackie Baillie’s smirking ‘penalty shot’ went about 6 yards over the top of the bar…
- Local MSP claims Argyll landowners ‘blight community progress’ and inflict ‘anti-democratic abuse’
Huh? It’s not 2 million for the Stonehenge tunnel, it’s 2 Billion, which makes dualling the A9 look like exceptional value for money… probably save rather more lives in the long run, too.
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