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Letters / Slow in declaring a climate emergency

Could Shetland Islands council confirm what they mean by “sustain activity in the gas and oil sector”? (Islands deal discussions continue; SN 16 September 2019 and Council slow in responding to climate change; SN, 17 September 2019).

Surely, with the climate emergency, we should be starting the transition away from fossil fuels and not sustaining it until 2050 and beyond.

This is from minutes of a meeting of the full council in June: “During debate comment was made that Shetland cannot afford for the oil industry not to be here.

“It was suggested that the Claire field is the prize that the Council cannot afford to lose.’

And this: “It was also commented that the brown field sites on Shetland was a huge advantage giving potential for sites for a future gas plant and capacity was a huge issue that could ease the bottle neck and needs to be considered.”

And then it was suggested that we could have ‘green oil’ by using the interconnector to feed the installations and power Sullom.

Mr Spence, industry consultant, spoke in terms of the request from the Clair field owners, the timeline and the potential for extending the life of the terminal to beyond 2050.

Is this perhaps why they are not rushing to declare a climate emergency?

Debra Nicolson
Tresta