Ocean Kinetics - The Engineering Experts

Letters / Natural environment far from safe

I felt almost sorry for David Thomson during his Radio Shetland interview re. VE’s [Viking Energy] failed CfD bid. The least SSE could’ve done was give him a new script.

Instead he had to repeat VE’s “all peat is degraded” mantra, thoroughly discredited a decade ago and taken straight from the hymn sheets of all big, unpopular and environmentally destructive developments, be they quarries, fracking, or some windfarms, i.e. “the environment we’re about to destroy is worthless or worse”.

He assures us that VE “takes care of the peat”. Let’s take a look at what he means by that: within VE’s ground investigation, this consists of countless bentonite (grey sludge) spillages and run-offs , with silt traps made of flimsy windbreak netting and even flimsier sticks obviously not up to the job.

In just one part of a windfarm quadrant large tracts of ground flora have been completely destroyed by tracked and other vehicles, which also caused severe compaction and churning up of peat which is going to make restoration rather difficult.

As if that wasn’t bad enough, a chemical toilet, blown over by a gale, disgorged its chemicals into the ground, and yards of plastic tape and packaging straps (the kind found wound around seabirds’ feet and beaks), and other rubbish, was left behind on the hills (some since cleared up by members of Sustainable Shetland).

All proof, if proof were needed, that our natural environment, our biodiversity and our peat are far from safe in the care of Viking Energy.

Rosa Steppanova
Lea Gardens

Scottish Parliament election, 6 May 2021