‘Affordability, prosperity and security should not be risked in the drive to deliver a low-carbon energy system’ that was the key message last night in Glasgow from GMB Scotland Secretary Gary Smith
Addressing the Centre for Energy Policy at Strathclyde University’s International Public Policy Institute, he said that the roles of domestic gas and nuclear production in the Scottish energy mix should ‘not be dismissed by policy makers’ if we want a genuinely just transition towards a low carbon economy.
Against a backdrop of rising fuel poverty, in-work poverty and dependence on imports, Scotland’s trade union for gas and utilities workers is calling for a pragmatic debate over our energy future on issues such as targets for fifty per cent of energy consumption to be supplied by renewable sources by 2030.
Smith said: “GMB supports a balanced energy policy that embraces all the viable indigenous options we have at our disposal to tackle our social inequalities while maximising prosperity and self-reliance as an energy nation.
“That’s why gas and nuclear are not incompatible with the pursuit of a low carbon economy, indeed they should be key components in the transitional process over the next generation given the realities of Scotland’s current energy challenges.
“One of the major issues facing policy makers is not ambition but pragmatism – we have to get the balance right between our social and economic energy needs while making our contribution to the overall reduction in global emissions.
“Scotland’s targets on carbon reduction and renewable energy are laudable but affordability, prosperity and security of supply should not be risked in the drive to deliver a low carbon energy system.”
Scots GMB trade union chief launches fierce attack on Labour party call for UK-wide ‘fracking’ ban