I WAS dismayed to read your report that Government advisers have proposals
which mean a ban on gas cookers and gas central heating in new-build homes
in only six years’ time (“Gas cookers could be banned to defeat climate
change”, The Herald, February 22). I expect that this is likely to be only
phase one of a more comprehensive ban. Considering that in 2040 it is
intended that no petrol and diesel vehicles can be sold in the UK, the
challenge for power generation to feed the national grid is very obvious.
When people arrive home from work and plug in their car to be charged and
at the same time put on the electric central heating and electric cooker
how can we be certain that all this power will be available?
The UK Government’s own 2017 figure of percentage share of electricity by
fuel type indicates that in Scotland 51.7 % was from renewables such as the
wind and 36.6 per cent from nuclear power stations. This determination by
the Scottish Government may satisfy the Green Party by leading the way
within the UK renewable energy targets, but may well be its downfall.
Any proponents of a “renewables-only” electricity future and who is
complacent that all will be well, have yet to convince me that any form of
weather-dependent electricity generation is reliable 24/7. The need for a
system which is flexible enough to meet sudden peaks in demand and could
consistently satisfy the future home scenario I have described, would
require greatly increased pumped water storage dams to feed new
hydro-electric power stations.
What will most likely happen is that Scotland will be forced to buy in
electricity to maintain the appearance of being “green”. The UK is already
heavily reliant on importing electricity from France where they are not so
hypersensitive about nuclear power generation and this import is bound to
increase – if they are still talking to us.
46 Breadie Drive, Milngavie.
I NOTE with interest three items in Friday’s Herald. First that changes to
the price cap on energy costs the consumer an extra £1.29 billion
(“Savings? Price cap costs an extra £1.29bn”, The Herald, February 22)
Next, your perceptive cartoon where Con is highlighted in the name Ofcon
while a customer is trying to complain. Finally, I turned to the back page
where the story is that Centrica, the parent company of Brittish Gas, has
doubled its profits on gas extraction in the seas west of Shetland and it
hoping to make more profits in the future from that area (“Energy giant
eyes West of Shetland prospects”, The Herald, February 22). As an aside its
share price fell as it now has less ability to rip off the poorest
consumers after the price cap.
It’s clear that Ofgem is no more than a sham and is manipulated by the big
power companies. Companies like Centrica have a foot in both camps; they
have production arms that produce energy and make big profits by selling
this energy to their distribution arms at a cost that, as if by magic,
mirrors their competitors’ rates. The distribution arms go to the regulator
quoting the wholesale fuel costs and get the “price cap” adjusted in their
Given the power to do it, I’d like to see our Scottish Government act and
go back to the situation we had in the UK before the South of Scotland
Electricity Board, the Hydro Board and Britoil were disbanded and sold off.
We should be able to produce energy and sell it on to Scottish consumers by
creating a non-profit-making organisation run for the benefit of the
public. It is an obvious truth that our UK government of any stripe is more
interested in corporate profits than the resultant consumer penury.
1 Douglas Drive East, Helensburgh.