Backing a new horse (Rosa Steppanova)

Viking windfarm supporter Chris Bunyan referred to Sustainable Shetland’s petition for a judicial review as “the last throw of the dice” in the local media.

His gambling analogy is rather apt. Viking Energy has been visiting the turf accountant since 2008 with money taken from our purse. Initially they were backing a horse called “Saving the Planet” but that creature has since been sent to the knackers’ yard. Now they’re backing a horse with an equally, perhaps even more seductive name: “Immense Riches”.

They’re gambling with Shetlanders’ physical and emotional health, the environment in general, Shetland’s unique landscape, peat carbon sinks and wildlife in particular, and of course our entire savings.

In common with many habitual gamblers, Viking Energy is secretive and evasive, stops at nothing and nothing is sacred. Promises such as “if the population of Shetland doesn’t want the windfarm, it won’t go ahead” were breached, because they were never meant to be honoured in the first place – just useful tools to lure the population into a false sense of trust and security.

Now Sustainable Shetland is also visiting the bookmaker, but backing a very different horse. The horse has many names: scrutiny and full consultation. Giving a voice to those who feel unheard, ignored and powerless. Trusting in the independence and impartiality of the Scottish judicial system.

Unlike Viking Energy, Sustainable Shetland is using its own money. To date, the generosity of our members regarding the Judicial review gamble has been nothing short of overwhelming, and continues as I write, demonstrating just how deeply folk feel about the Viking Energy threat hanging over these islands, and how closely bound they are to their homes, the land they have worked for generations, and the hills they love and know like the backs of their hands.

Rosa Steppanova
The Lea,


Add Your Comment
  • John Tulloch

    • July 23rd, 2012 18:13

    Well, Mr Kryton, we eagerly await you “ripping this to pieces,” so no shilly-shallying, get on with it!

  • John Kryton

    • July 24th, 2012 13:34

    Massive assumption and mistake Mr Tulloch, I didn’t say I would do the ripping or even that this is the she to whom I was referring. The fact that you have picked on this ladies letter as an example of deceit for me to rip to pieces speaks for its self does it not Mr Tulloch.
    This is why I didn’t follow Mr Harmer’s views of naming names as there is always some clever clogs out there who make assumptions and gets things so very wrong.
    I need nor will say any more as you have drawn a clear picture for all to see.

  • John Tulloch

    • July 24th, 2012 16:59

    Mr Kryton,

    I’m pleased we’ve established that this isn’t the piece of deception to which you were referring.

    Now either name the deceiver and the deception or get back in your basket.

  • Douglas Young

    • July 25th, 2012 8:18

    That’s the first (of many) cuts in onshore subsidies announced, 10% gone, as the UK Govt look to cheaper gas supply. Also, can we avoid personal comments on here, we want as many contributors, from both sides, to speak.
    What happens to the £9 million if SSE decide not to go ahead?

  • Kathy Greaves

    • July 26th, 2012 18:42

    Rosa is right in all her points made. And we, the population who have to pay for, and live with, this monstrosity, have had no say in the matter – ithat is because WE don’t matter.

  • ian tinkler

    • July 26th, 2012 23:19

    How the worm is turning. We have only a 10% cutback in ROC subsidies at this time and already SSE is talking about possible withdrawal from planned onshore wind farm projects. Quale Monroe have cut and run from Scotland as their business expertise has all but bankrupted them North of the Border… If SuS is not successful in legally stopping Viking we may have several hundred legal actions against VE as legal precedent is now well established pertaining to residence too close to turbines(less than two K). What a bunch of total idiots are Trustees Stooges are beginning to look. The sad thing is the legal battle has not really started yet. Any chance of getting our £12 million back before “The Stooges”, Ratter his acolyte, Wiles and assorted Sheep, waste anymore?

  • David Spence

    • July 27th, 2012 16:45

    It seems so very evident that the average money greedy capitalist(s) will do anything to make the quick buck regardless to any long term damage they cause to these islands as well as creating a massive void financially for any, more worthy, projects which may come under the control of our rather deflated, ignorant and arrogant capitalists and co…..sorry, I mean the CT…… Who’s interests are not looking after the majority of people in Shetland but a very small minority called Viking Energy. Putting all your eggs in one basket, rings a bell. Time and time again it is the small minded, arrogant, ignorant, selfish and highly destructive capitalists (banks and co.) that have caused more damage to this planet than any other form of social contributor. Isn’t it ironic that we are deciding whether to give greedy capitalists money for their ill-fated, destructive project because of the self centred, greedy capitalists causing the pollution in the first place. Before anybody comments of communism and alike……..which there is no connection between the two unless you take spoon fed propaganda over the last 60 years or so as being justified……oh, yes, it is still going on…..only its oil rich arab countries that are the enemy now.

  • Sandy McMillan

    • July 28th, 2012 1:02

    Rosa may be backing a new horse, but Ian Tinkler is riding a winner, well done Ian on your research, and never more truthful words said about Councillors Ratter and Wills, a right pair of Stoogies, leading a bunch of Muppets, sorry Trustees.

  • Lindsay Wiseman

    • July 31st, 2012 23:03

    Mr Kryton, please would you make it clear to us all – are you a Shetland resident or do you live south as you always seem have a look of backing for Mr Harmer in his opinions.

  • Rosa Steppanova

    • August 1st, 2012 0:55

    Sterling work Ian. Well done for digging up this gem. I’d no idea the rats had already left the sinking ship – Quayle Munro, SCT’s esteemed, and much quoted, Viking Energy consultants, pulling out of renewables paradise Scotland. Jeff Goddard, SCT financial controller, really knows how to pick them, doesn’t he? At least Rob Cormie, SCT’s very own personal financial advisor, did the decent thing and resigned. Perhaps Jeff also has the guts to do the honourable thing? In the real world, he’d by out on his ear by now, but all is acceptable and forgivable at SCT it seems, especially when it comes to their pet (VE) investment.
    The least he could do is apologise to SCT trustees for having put his, wholly misguided, trust in this company and this individual, and for spoon-feeding trustees and part of the local media with their pie-in-the-sky financial forecasts. Now that this sad episode in SCT’s history has (hopefully?) come to an end, can we please, at long last, have some impartial and independent financial advice regarding SCT’s VE investment? I’m not holding my breath, put hope that at least some of SCT’s trustees take off their blinkers and start to take their responsibility as guardians of our oil funds seriously enough to play a vital role in the selection of suitable and honourable consultants from now on.

  • Rosa Steppanova

    • August 1st, 2012 1:01

    oooops, small correction please re. recent comment. third line from bottom after breath – should be but not put.

  • W Conroy

    • August 1st, 2012 11:54

    26th June… Shetland Times… “A high-powered financial consultant has told trustees that the Viking windfarm is the best renewables investment opportunity he has ever seen.”

    26th July… BBC News… That same “high powered consultant” has quit, the company is facing a loss and are closing up shop in Scotland.

    I’m so glad the SCT trustees used such reputable business advisers to advise them on whether or not to invest before throwing money to the wind!

    Don’t worry trustees… I know a guy that sells snake oil that’ll cure all your ills.

  • J S Robertson

    • August 1st, 2012 13:21

    Lindsay, he said to Ian Tinkler a while ago he is a sooth moother fae Aberdeen. But am seen him mention he works up here.

  • Sarah Irvine

    • August 10th, 2012 12:37

    I moved away from Shetland 6 years ago but read this stuff every week and the thing that stands out to me more than any good argument is the argument itself. Its vexing to see a community split, but more vexing is the fact that some of you are making it so personal. Shame on you.


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