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Scotland’s not-so-Green Freeports: Minister’s equivocal response leaves way open to nuclear manufacturing facility

Scottish anti-nuclear campaigners were disappointed to learn that the
Scottish Net Zero Minister will not be opposed to a nuclear manufacturing
facility in a supposed Green Freeport. The Scottish Nuclear Free Local
Authorities and Highlands Against Nuclear Power wrote to Michael Matheson
MSP in the hope that he could provide reassurance that the two new Green
Freeports planned for Scotland in Forth and Cromarty & Inverness Firth
would not include a manufacturing plant to produce prefabricated parts for
supposedly Small Modular Reactors, such as the 470 MW design championed by
Rolls-Royce, but the Minister was unable to do so.

The Minister’s
assertion that the new Green Freeports could include businesses undertaking
work for the nuclear sector appears to both the NFLA and HANP a
contradiction of their stated aim to ‘contribute towards a just
transition to net-zero emissions by 2045’ and in so doing create
thousands of new green technology jobs.

Councillor Paul Leinster, Convenor
of NFLA Scottish, said: “We are glad that the Minister has once more
stated that there will be no new nuclear power generation on site, but
bemused that it would be acceptable for a manufacturing facility to be
located there that would make parts that would be shipped elsewhere to
enable nuclear power generation to take place outside Scotland. Nuclear is
not ‘green’; although the industry makes much of its claim that
electricity generation is carbon free this fails to take account of the
huge carbon footprint that any nuclear plant creates throughout its
lifecycle and once it is decommissioned.

 NFLA 16th March 2023


March 19, 2023 - Posted by | politics, UK

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