Mike Weir welcomes energy report

Mike Weir MP, SNP spokesperson on Energy, has welcomed the publication of a report which demonstrates that renewable energy is the best way to ensure that consumers get the lowest prices for energy in the future.

The report, which was produce by the Committee on Climate Change, concluded that household energy bills will be about £600 higher per year by the end of the decade if the United Kingdom relies increasingly on gas, whilst they would only be around £100 higher than today’s average if the United Kingdom concentrated on renewable power generation.

Angus MP, Mr Weir said that this demonstrates that the approach of the Scottish Government is clearly the best way forward, and also demonstrates Scotland’s potential to provide clean, green energy to neighbouring countries.

Recent days saw the publication of a report by the DECC showing that Scotland smashed through its renewable electricity target for 2011, generating 36.1% of electricity demand from renewable sources.

Figures for the first three quarters of 2012 also show that electricity production has increased by 15.2 per cent compared to the same period in 2011, indicating that further progress is likely to be made when statistics for the full year become available.

Commenting on the report, Mr Weir said: “Whilst any rise in prices is unwelcome this report clearly shows that the most sensible and realistic way forward is to invest in clean, green renewable energy.

“Not only will it reduce carbon emissions but it will also ensure that hard-pressed consumers get the best possible deal.

“The Scottish Government is already committed to producing 100 per cent of our electricity needs from renewables and this report demonstrates that this is a much more sensible approach than the UK government’s “Dash for Gas” which will end up costing the consumer six times as much.

“Scotland has surpassed our interim target . The growth of renewables in Scotland will mean that not only will we be able to supply our own energy needs but will have energy to sell to others.

“The report blows out of the water the ridiculous claims of the No campaign that energy bills will be more expensive in an independent Scotland.

“A Scotland with clean green energy will have lower bills than the rest of the UK, who seem determined to go down the route of more gas stations and expensive nuclear power.

“Not only will gas be much more expensive, as indicated in the report, but it will be a far less reliable source of energy.

“The rest of the UK would ultimately have to rely on imported gas presently coming from Russia and Qatar, which in the latter case comes through the Straits of Hormuz a potentially very unstable route given the current tensions with Iran.

“An over-reliance on gas would also mean the rest of the UK could not meet their EU climate change commitments.

“An independent Scotland will be a reliable supplier of green energy that will be a huge boost to Scotland - but also the best and most reliable source for the rest of the UK to access green power and ensure that they meet their international commitments.

“The notion that the rest of the UK will be so upset by Scottish independence that they will turn to potentially unstable sources of energy flies in the face of all reason.

“All nations will act in their own best interests and that means trading with Scotland in energy.”