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Election letters 2019 / Lib Dems to blame for Viking Energy

Who is to blame for the threat to Shetland posed by Viking Energy?

Everyone driving any distance North or West of Lerwick, visitors and locals alike, may well soon drive lengthy proportions of their journeys under multiple towering concrete masts fixed into massive concrete bases which will not only disrupt the ecosystem and devastate tens of thousands of tons of carbon-storing peat, but will themselves leach great quantities of CO2 into the atmosphere.

In his contribution to James Mackenzie’s informative and balanced letter ‘Smokescreen’ of pre-development operations‘ (SN, 12 August 2019) and elsewhere, habitual mudslinger Ian Tinkler attempts to blame the youthful SNP candidate and his father.

Had Shetland’s Lib Dems been true to their principles they would have forced the democratic reform on the then owner of Viking Energy, Shetland Charitable Trust, that so many agreed was necessary.  The people of Shetland could then have consented to the project or not.

In his book The Liberal Challenge – Democracy Through ParticipationJo Grimond sought more opportunities for the public engagement in the running of their affairs, arguing increased involvement would be of benefit in itself and would promote further benefits.  This built on established Liberal principles.

Jonathan Wills actively promoted democratic reform of SCT.  Tavish Scott and Beatrice Wishart said it was necessary, but did nothing.

So who is to blame for allowing Viking Energy’s plans to plunder Shetland’s oil money and landscape to get so far?  We should blame Shetland’s long-governing laissez-faire Lib Dem political establishment.

Peter Hamilton
Scalloway

General Election - 12 December 2019