Nuclear becomes Scottish election battle

Nuclear power looks set to play a vote-swinging role in the Scottish elections in May following the Japanese reactor accidents. This week the Scottish Labour Party will launch its manifesto […]

Register now!

By Kelvin Ross

Nuclear power looks set to play a vote-swinging role in the Scottish elections in May following the Japanese reactor accidents.

This week the Scottish Labour Party will launch its manifesto which will include a return to nuclear as an energy source.

Currently there is a ban in Scotland on the building of new nuclear stations, a policy backed by the SNP.

Scotland’s First Minister and SNP leader Alex Salmond said at the weekend: “These different visions of the energy future of Scotland will clearly be a significant issue in the election campaign.”

He added that Scotland’s advantages for renewable energy sources made Labour’s “pro-nuclear position in Scotland an absurdity”.

And the SNP have stated that a carbon price floor as outlined in last week’s Budget by George Osborne would amount to an effective subsidy for nuclear power.

However, the Labour Party in Scotland has said that it would only “remove the presumption against new nuclear for the future” and added that “any application will be considered on its merits in terms of safety, environmental impact and the local community”.