We can see why (Allen Fraser)

The statement “If the people of Shetland don’t want it, it won’t happen”, made from the outset at the “consultation” events staged by Viking Energy, can now be interpreted as an attempt to deceive the public.

Why? Because in 2004 the SIC made a £1.9 million guarantee that the windfarm would be built despite any public view to the contrary and to hell with any environmental consequences.

Director of Viking Energy and Shetland Charitable Trust chairman Bill Manson now claims that the £1.9 million interconnector cable guarantee was to attract all form of renewables.

Yet at the staged Viking Energy “consultations” we were being told that the 600MW interconnector was for the exclusive use of the 540MW windfarm and there could be no further proliferation of mega-scale developments across Shetland.

We were told at these staged “consultations” that environmental guidelines would be followed and no turbines would be built within 2km of dwellings, yet 74 of them will be. The public were told by Viking Energy’s chairman and project co-ordinator that a health impact assessment was being carried out when in fact this was being cancelled. Thus Viking Energy prevarication followed Viking Energy equivocation and now we know why.

We can see why Viking Energy has tried to bend and circumvent every environmental rule in the book. We can see why the majority of SIC councillors declare a “conflict of interest” and take no part in windfarm or cable discussions. Unfortunately these councillors have taken the Pontius Pilate option and not one of them has spoken one word in defence of Shetland’s environment.

We also can see why, following the Viking Energy addendum, further public consultation was blocked by SIC councillors sitting as Viking Energy developers. We can see why SIC councillors, sitting as Viking Energy developers, voted in favour of the cable track cutting a destructive swath through Weisdale and Kergord en route to their industrial complex.

We can see why this minority of councillors acting as developers voted to accept Viking Energy’s proposals against the express recommendations of their own planning department. We can see why they voted to avoid a public inquiry.

We can also see why SIC windfarm developers, sitting as charitable trustees at a recent inquorate meeting, voted £420,000 of public money to Viking Energy to spend as they please.

When the subsidy on mega-scale wind farms has ended, and decaying towers standing on rotting concrete plinths continue to overlook 100km of washed out access roads and derelict quarries, what excuses will they offer? I guess they’ll say it was the big bad government that granted planning and promised us all that money so “hit wisna onything we did”!

Allen Fraser


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