Trustees are legally bound (Geordie Pottinger)
Investment decisions by the Shetland Charitable Trust (SCT), as presently constituted, lie with the newly elected councillors for Shetland Island Council (SIC) as SCT trustees, ex-officio.
Newly elected SIC councillors can vote whichever way they please on any subject, commensurate with their own ideas and political opinions, irrespective of their intrinsic merit.
However, they do not enjoy the same freedom of decision while acting as SCT trustees.
As appointed trustees of Shetland Charitable Trust it behoves them, legally, to take investment decisions in order to make the best returns possible while, at the same time, protecting the trusts’ funds. This, inevitably, involves risks, but these risks are tempered by sound advice from investment advisers.
Rather than being vilified, the former SCT chairman and present SCT management should be commended for directing the course of investment in the partnership of Viking Energ windfarm. Not only has this investment already made spectacular returns, but has the prospect of, if followed through to fruition, of ensuring that Shetland will, finally, by being connected to the national electricity grid system, be guaranteed to have a reliable supply of electricity, indefinitely. The further prospect of developing other sustainable clean energy systems in Shetland will help to ensure a sustainable Shetland into future years.
Of course, Sustainable Shetland, so called, is against this prospect, but what do they have to offer instead? We all know what they are against, but what are they for? They would appear to want to keep the status quo, i.e fossil fuel burning generators with a few small wind generators thrown in here and there for good measure. Fine – until oil and gas runs out, then what – a nuclear power station? I doubt very much if many people in Shetland would want one of them, neither fission nor fusion, in their backyard.
So, how exactly does Sustainable Shetland propose that a reliable closed electricity grid be provided in Shetland when the oil and gas have gone – or don’t they care about the long term future for succeeding generations? With 800 members along with 2,738 objectors to the windfarm, not to mention the “majority” of the Shetland population in their camp, you would think that at least one would be able to come up with an acceptable alternative to the Viking Energy windfarm. I really am looking forward to hearing what it is. Maybe I’ll even change my mind, Billy – but don’t hold your breath.