In brief for 10 June 2011

Broch vandals

POLICE are looking for vandals who have smashed lights and damaged steps at the ancient Clickimin broch in Lerwick.

Police said the broch had been vandalised at least three times in May and again on Thursday night.

Meanwhile a kitchen window in the Sandside area of Mossbank was broken some time between 11.45pm on Thursday and 7.30am on Friday.

Anyone with information can contact the police on 01595 692110.

Not so fast broadband

HIGHLANDS and Islands Enterprise are only now taking the first steps towards implementing the UK government funded plan to expand superfast broadband throughout the region, including Shetland.

Eight months after being chosen as one of four areas to receive funding to roll out next generation broadband, HIE are now looking for a partner to start working on the project.

HIE are hoping to provide 30MB bandwidth to every part of the region by 2020, but with an allocation of just £10 million from the UK government this will be hard to achieve even with the match funding they hope to receive.

SIC telecommunications manager Marvin Smith said he was delighted the investment was coming and hoped that it would benefit Shetland.

However at the moment the question is how much HIE can stretch out of the limited funding they have been given, and that will depend largely on the partner they go into business with.

The SIC has invested £1 million in linking Lerwick and Scalloway up to the Faroese fibre optic cable that crosses the south mainland of the isles, which should be completed this summer.

Road safety

PRIMARY pupils from 16 schools across Shetland gathered at Lerwick Town Hall on Friday to mark the end of a hard year promoting road safety.

The youngsters from P6 and P7 gave power point presentations, showed animated films and performed live in front of their peers about wearing seatbelts, the risks of playing “chicken” on the road, the consequences of being hit by a car.

Lindsay Garrick, from Aith primary, spoke about her trip to Edinburgh for the launch of the UN Decade of Action for Road Safety, after producing one of the 10 winning designs for a poster for the event.

SIC road safety officer Elaine Skinley said: “It is encouraging to see so many creative responses to the subject of road safety and I am sure that the children presenting today will carry those messages with them into later life”. 

Anaerobic digestion

SCOTTISH farmers have voiced disappointment at the low rate of government payments for generating electricity from anaerobic digestion.

NFU Scotland has hit out at low level increases to feed in tariffs (FiTs) for anaerobic digestion and cuts in payments for solar power.

NFUS president Nigel Miller said the government had ignored the industry which had urged a more positive response to these technologies.

“Anaerobic digestion has the potential to produce real value and generate energy from waste products in a reliable manner, and could make a huge contribution to Scotland and the UK’s renewable targets if given the chance,” he said.

Project TransmiT

ENERGY regulator Ofgem is holding a “stakeholder event” in Glasgow on 30 June to discuss potential charging options for electricity transmission.

Ofgem is carrying out an independent review of transmission charging under the title Project TransmiT, which will look at whether to level the cost throughout the country in the same way the Royal mail does for postage.

The Viking Energy wind farm developers are hoping that a new system will be introduced that will make it cheaper for them to export electricity from Shetland, should the project be given the go ahead by the Scottish government this year.

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