Last month, when the much anticipated announcement was made of winners and losers under the Contracts for Difference scheme, it seemed the 20 year struggle for the Western Isles to be connected for generation purposes to the National Grid had finally prevailed.
Setting targets is one thing and meeting them is another. That is the underlying message on which the latest, highly sceptical report by the Committee on Climate Change is built.
An "unprecedented" declaration has been signed by five former UK and Scottish Government ministers urging support for the oil and gas industry.
A ministerial visit that’s long stuck in my mind was to a city called Khanty-Mansiysk far to the north in Siberia. You haven’t heard of it? Well, join a very large club to which I belonged before going there.
The madness in Ukraine has dramatically fast-forwarded issues that were already in the making. Soaring energy prices, over-reliance on imported gas, storage which is essential to facilitate the growth of renewables … the list goes on and on.
Don’t fritter away Scotland’s ScotWind millions, argues former energy minister Brian Wilson, on the £700m coming to the country's coffers.
The New Year is a time for staying close to home so, in that spirit, I will take a look at some energy-related issues that affect the Western Isles and will come to a head in 2022.
As the day draws nigh when the winners are announced in the great ScotWind lottery, the lists of promises from prospective developers grow longer and more sophisticated. There is nothing they will not do for communities and supply chains. I hope somebody is keeping note.
“If we were to say from one day to the other that we close down production… I believe that would put a stop to an industrial transition that is needed to succeed in the momentum towards net zero. So we are about to develop and transit, not close down”.
Whatever message is drawn, the current explosion of interest in energy policy should ensure that realism impinges upon the rhetoric which will accompany COP26. Virtue alone does not keep the lights on.
With COP26 in Glasgow two months away, one might think Scottish political eyes would be turning towards the issues it will discuss, even if that means parking some other preoccupations for the time being. Not so.
Twenty years ago, I pointed out that we were heading towards 80% of our electricity being generated from gas within two decades and 80% of that gas coming from Russia. It was true at the time.
Reading political party manifestos is, it must be said, a duty rather than a pleasure. So much verbiage, so little prospect of the vast majority of it ever being fulfilled.
In his latest column, former UK Energy Minister Brian Wilson questions the Scottish Government's withdrawal of support for oil service exporters.
Hydrogen is the new Holy Grail. The UK Government’s Energy White Paper gives it 175 references, three times the number for offshore wind and 10 times more than new nuclear.
A former UK energy minister has called on the Scottish Government to “come clean” about the terms of a lease agreement for a mothballed BiFab yard on the Isle of Lewis.
A new “taskforce” of pro-Union business leaders, politicians and public servants aims to make the case for Scotland remaining part of the UK.
Crown Estate Scotland’s (CES's) announcement of an offshore wind leasing round has caused great excitement around the Scottish coast, reflected in comments from communities standing to benefit.
A Scottish trade union boss has accused Holyrood of “surrendering” in its fight to win local renewables jobs from big North Sea offshore wind projects.
It has long intrigued me that, throughout the Second World War, the ground was being laid for the work of the North of Scotland Hydro Electric Board. Even in the darkest days of battle, people and politics were looking to a better future.
I have just read about an “unintended consequence” of Brexit which involves sausages. Unless a derogation is achieved, Britain’s sausage makers will be unable to sell to the EU and Northern Ireland without a “special export health certificate”.
Thirty years ago, legislation to privatise Scotland’s electricity industry was completing its passage through parliament. It created outcomes which were never intended and are ripe for review.
The UK’s biggest power cut in more than a decade has set alarm bells ringing – and the peal is being heard far beyond the immediate causes of the episode.
It did not take long for declarations of a climate emergency to prompt the kind of episode they are assumed in some quarters to legitimise.
Emergencies are not to be taken lightly so I am waiting with interest to find what the UK Parliament and Scottish Government announcements of a climate change emergency add up to.