Gazette Letters - No wavering on election pledge

Highlands and Islands Conservative MSP David Cameron
Highlands and Islands Conservative MSP David Cameron

Sir, – I am disappointed at the suggestions, made by senior Labour Party figures in your article headlined ‘Calls for subsea cable work to start’ (Gazette 21/09/17), that the UK Government is wavering from the position laid out in our manifesto at the recent General Election in relation to island wind projects.

As many of your readers will be aware, the Conservative manifesto stated that we would “support the development of wind projects in the remote islands of Scotland, where they will directly benefit local communities”.

That position has not changed.

The UK Government’s Minister for Energy, Richard Harrington MP, recently met with the Comhairle to reaffirm our commitment on this, and I have also had the pleasure of meeting stakeholders including the Stornoway Trust, crofters and others who all have an interest in this project moving forward, in both Lewis and at the Scottish Parliament.

It is clear from the remarks made by Labour that the party simply does not understand the difference between constructing an interconnector, and allowing island wind projects to enter the CFD subsidy auction.

It is the latter which must be prioritised and which the UK Government is working hard to achieve.

It is also a bit rich for Labour to make such demands given its UK manifesto never mentioned remote island wind once.

As usual, Labour is coming late to this and it is about time it set out its own vision for the islands rather than merely piggy-backing on ours. – Yours, etc.,

Donald Cameron MSP Highlands and Islands

Scottish Conservative & Unionist