Thursday, 7 January 2010

Gibson backs Beauly-Denny upgrade decision

News release
Immediate release

Highlands and Islands SNP MSP Rob Gibson has welcomed the decision to grant planning permission for the upgrade of the existing Beauly to Denny overhead power distribution line.

Mr Gibson said that the decision (announced in Parliament by Economy Minister Jim Mather) was vital for the future of the Highland and Islands economy as well as allowing Scotland to secure energy independence and make a substantial contribution to reducing carbon emissions in Europe.

Mr Gibson asked if Mr Mather if the necessary expansion of the transmission network will eventually include under sea cables at a later date?

Mr Mather responded that the grid would need further strengthen to allow greater capacity to deliver power from Scotland.

Commenting after Mr Gibson said….

"I welcome this decision. As hydro power allowed the green power from the glens to be realised in the 20th century. This decision will allow the green power from the coasts to be realized for the 21st century. "

"This will secure Scotland's energy independence. In time and with care the transmission network has to be expanded to include under sea cables. They can play their part in transporting the power from the coasts around Scotland and beyond. "

"Beauly to Denny has been a highly contentious issue. It is important that communities are listened to. However there cannot be anymore delay in starting the upgrade. Thanks to the actions of the Labour and Liberal Democrat's , who started the lengthy Public Inquiry in 2006, much time has been lost. Further delay will not help either the Highlands and Islands economy or Scotland's carbon emissions targets.

"Beauly to Denny is vital to the role which Scotland can play in cutting carbon and arresting the onset of climate change. Time is of the essence and I hope that the upgrade is completed as soon as possible."


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