In David Morris’s interview in your paper he lays out his plans for the future of Morecambe and Lunesdale. The Green Party believe that they are not the way forward in 2015.
The nuclear energy industry is a dead end. No commercial nuclear powerplant has ever been built without huge government subsidy (EDF have been guaranteed nearly double the current price of electricity to build Hinckley ‘C’); we have no agreed method for the long term disposal of all the toxic spent fuel, and the industry as a whole, including producing the fuel, is a significant producer of CO2 emissions.
The only plausible reason for promoting the construction of a third Heysham plant is employment, however the renewable energy industry has been shown to create 12 times the number of jobs per installed gigawatt than nuclear.
Around the bay we have a near perfect scenario for placing ourselves in the forefront of the energy technologies of tomorrow. We have the engineering skills and the natural resources in terms of wind, tide and wave to research, develop and manufacture the infrastructure not only this country needs, but the world will need for generations to come. We would not only create jobs around the bay but move from building systems for delivering weapons of mass destruction that no one can countenance actually using, to building systems that will protect this planet and all life on it.
We agree with David Morris that housing is a key issue in our area. Once again we can create a win-win situation by investment in the renovation of our buildings, with a particular focus of making sure that all homes are energy efficient, starting with the poorest in our community. This requires significant investment in training, grants and regulatory incentives. It also requires imagination, such as encouraging local co-operatives and other innovative community-based approaches to bringing houses back in to use. It requires changes to government regulation: at the moment we have the bizarre situation where it is often cheaper to build new than renovate as the former doesn’t attract VAT while the latter does. With the right imagination and investment we would, as a community, produce warm homes, reduce energy usage and generate rewarding, skilled jobs with real security.
As for a tunnel under the bay, I think it is appropriate that it is known as ‘David’s tunnel’ since I have yet to meet anyone else who lives in the area who actually wants it.
Phil Chandler (North Lancashire Green Party)