GMB Scotland seeks urgent review of energy policies

19 May 2016 (Last Updated May 19th, 2016 18:30)

UK general trade union GMB Scotland has urged the new government to carry out an urgent review of its energy policies and to introduce an industrial strategy for generating more jobs across the energy sector.

UK general trade union GMB Scotland has urged the new government to carry out an urgent review of its energy policies and to introduce an industrial strategy for generating more jobs across the energy sector.

According to GMB Scotland, the previous Scottish Government was reluctant to restructure energy policies, which include the future role of fracking and nuclear power.

GMB Scotland secretary Gary Smith said: "The Scottish political establishment has not been honest about the hard choices we face over our energy future or with regards to employment in the sector more widely.

"The previous Scottish Government was reluctant to restructure energy policies, which include the future role of fracking and nuclear power."

"The North Sea is in rapid decline and coal-fired power is over. We are stretching the lifespans of Hunterston and Torness and the Scottish government would rather the fracking debate goes away while we haemorrhage skilled jobs at an alarming rate."

Dips in oil price have not only affected economic growth in Scotland, but has also significantly increased unemployment in the country.

About 8,000 people lost their jobs between January and March due to the oil price crisis, increasing the number of unemployed people to 169,000.

Smith added: "We will be writing to the new Cabinet Secretary urging him to recognise these realities and to bring forward a fresh energy policy that delivers affordability, balance and security, while ensuring people here in Scotland benefit from the economic and employment dividends."