East Lothian Council will hold a “special meeting” today (20 April) to discuss Scottish Power’s planning application to the Scottish Government to redevelop Cockenzie’s power station to be fired by gas.

Duncan McLaren, Friends of the Earth Scotland Chief Executive, said: “Any continued power generation at Cockenzie must contribute to Scotland’s sustainable energy future. We could see the potential for either a high-efficiency combined heat and power plant, or a plant demonstrates commercial scale carbon-capture technology from the outset. Although we recognise that gas is less carbon intensive than coal, we still think that if steps towards a low carbon future are not taken the site at Cockenzie should be shut down.”

In 2009 Friends of the Earth published the report “The Power of Scotland Renewed”, along with the World Development Movement, WWF Scotland and RSPB Scotland. Based on modelling by independent energy analysts Garrad Hassan, the report showed that Scotland can meet its electricity needs with renewable energy by 2030.

Mr McLaren added: “The power generation sector is the largest single source of carbon dioxide, it is vital that Scotland’s electricity generation is decarbonised by 2030.

“In no realistic scenario in the report does the scheduled decommissioning of large generation capacity at Cockenzie, Hunterson B and Longannet seriously compromise Scotland’s energy security.

“Moderate investment in electricity storage and smart grid management can ensure that Scotland’s energy needs will be met even if the supply from variable renewable sources falls to zero during a period of peak demand.

“It is clear that neither a new coal plant at Hunterston nor a gas-fired replacement power station at Cockenzie are essential for Scotland’s energy security in the future.”

ENDS

For media enquiries please contact:

Per Fischer, Press Office, Friends of the Earth Scotland
t: 0131 243 2719

Notes to Editors

Cockenzie Power Station – A Special Council Meeting http://www.eastlothian.gov.uk/site/scripts/news_article.php?newsID=544

Friends of the Earth Scotland exists to help people in Scotland look after the planet for everyone’s future. We think globally and act locally in Scotland, delivering solutions to climate change by enabling and empowering people to take both individual and collective action. We offer help to people with the big things in life – helping to sustain a healthy society and environment. We believe that all of our children’s futures will be better because of what we do. www.foe-scotland.org.uk

Power of Scotland Renewed: This report shows that it is possible to have a clean, green energy supply in Scotland. By 2030 renewable energy can meet between 60% and 143% of Scotland’s projected annual electricity demand, depending of the level of investment in energy saving and new renewables. www.foe-scotland.org.uk/powerofscotlandrenewed