“..whilst natural resources from coal to oil and gas to wind and tidal have been pivotal to recent Scottish history, we have to understand them in terms of their constitutive role in human social relations. These themes will become only more pivotal as the energy future dominates political discussion and the urgency for socially just climate action continues to grow.”
In the first of a new series on Scotland’s Economic Future: Disruptive Ideas, Robert Pollock argues for profound institutional change – drawing on (bitter) lessons from the wind industry. Part 2 follows (see below)
It is time that decommissioning policy be hastily re-examined in the UK. The government needs to commission a full evidence-based report into the environmental, social and economic benefits, comparing them to other options such as building more green energy stations and even spending the money on things like health or education.
‘Despite significant uncertainty for renewables in recent years, the sector continues to outperform expectations and go from strength-to-strength….it is clearly one part of the Scottish economy where success should be recognised.’
‘..it is time for governments to stop wasting time and money on technologies like CCS that aren’t working. They need to finally get serious about leading a major drive for energy efficiency instead’.
“The renewables investment would generate substantially more sustainable jobs in areas like design, construction and operations and maintenance over the typical 25-year lifespan of a facility.” Why taxpayer-funded North Sea decommissioning is a bad idea.
The oil price shows no sign of recovery any time soon; thousands of jobs are being lost; the big producers have left the North Sea and the smaller ones are following suit. Scotland needs to start real planning for the post-oil – and post-carbon – economy.
Nicola Sturgeon and David Cameron have rushed to Aberdeen to pledge financial support to surmount the oil industry slump. But the city was never given the tools to benefit fully from the boom, argues the Aberdeen-based author. It now needs a change in Scotland’s political culture to make the transition.