Research shows Tory energy policies holding Scotland back

From SNP Media today:

New research has revealed that Scotland’s green energy sector contributes £5.2billion every year to the economy and employs 22,000 people, but previous studies have shown the Tories are holding back Scotland’s renewables industry with extortionate costs.

The research by the Fraser of Allander Institute shows that the renewables sector produces 97% of Scotland’s electricity and is a ‘vital part of Scotland’s economy’ by supporting jobs in other industries such as construction and manufacturing.

However, Tory energy policies are holding the industry back by charging astronomical prices for companies to access the infrastructure needed to distribute the energy they produce. This opens the UK market to importing cheaper energy from Europe, jeopardising thousands of jobs in Scotland.

A study earlier this month by Renewables UK showed how energy producers in Scotland face the highest charges in Europe to access the National Grid and to export to Europe, with the north of Scotland facing a £7.33/MWh charge whilst a number of European countries pay a fraction of that or nothing at all.

Commenting, SNP MSP Fiona Hyslop said:

“Scotland’s renewables sector is one of the best in the world. It makes an enormous contribution to our economy every single year and will form a vital part of our transition to net zero – we are already making significant progress as nearly all of our energy is produced from green sources.

“It is extremely encouraging to see from this report that 22,000 jobs are already supported in the industry, with a further 5,200 jobs in construction and manufacturing.

“However, the progress of Scotland’s industry is being held back by the Tories and their extortionate costs for transmission of energy both within the UK and in export to other European countries, some of whom face no charge at all to produce energy in their own countries and then export it.

“Scotland’s renewables sector is thriving, and is growing, but it faces a threat from the Tories and their astronomical costs to access the grid and distribute its energy supplies to consumers.”

4 thoughts on “Research shows Tory energy policies holding Scotland back

  1. It requires the Scottish government to kick up a fuss about this, and for the sector to take the UK to court on the grounds of competition discrimination.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. The UK English government are deliberately attempting to destroy Scotland’s renewable energy industry. I agree with gavin, this needs challenging in the courts. The SNP and the Greens(!) need to shout it from the rooftops to ensure that people in Scotland know they are being discrimated against, forced to pay more for their electricity and are fully aware that their economy is being deliberately stifled by the London Tory English government.

    Or are the SNP and the poeple of Scotland OK with this?

    Liked by 1 person

  3. O/T There is much trumpeting today of the UK concluding a free trade agreement with Norway, Iceland and Lichstenstein. Given these three countries are European Economic Area members, I suspect the net additional benefit over the situation prior to Brexit is rather limited, if any for the UK.

    However, it is framed a bit differently elsewhere! Can you spot the key factor missing from UK coverage – unless you know differently?

    “This free trade agreement seeks to safeguard as close trade relations as possible following the UK’s withdrawal from the European Economic Area (EEA).”

    And then this: “The EEA EFTA States–UK free trade agreement is an ambitious, progressive and comprehensive free trade agreement. It covers the full range of trade in goods, services and investment, digital trade, capital movements, government procurement, intellectual property, competition, subsidies, small and medium sized enterprises, good regulatory practices and regulatory cooperation, recognition of professional qualifications, trade and sustainable development. It also encompasses legal and horizontal issues including dispute settlement.”

    And how difficult was this to conclude? “Negotiations towards the comprehensive free trade agreement between the two sides commenced in September 2020. Due to a tight timeframe and urgency the negotiations were conducted simultaneously in all respective substance areas, with regular meetings between Chief negotiators. As a result of the unprecedented social-distancing measures and travel restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic, the negotiation teams from the UK, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway WITH SUPPORT FROM THE EFTA Secretariat, met solely via video conferencing throughout the negotiating period.” (my emphasis)

    So this is how ‘comprehensively’ and easily (since just last September) a FTA can be agreed by Westminster with, yes EFTA members! Worth remembering when the usual Better Together scares are recycled concerning trade relations between an independent Scotland and the Kingdom of Southern Britain and NI.


    Liked by 2 people

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