Torness nuclear power station is one of the biggest employers in the area, and the GMB Union are concerned about job losses when it is decommissioned in 2023.
Last week GMB Scotland senior organiser, Jim Moohan, said: “There is a serious risk of Scotland missing out on the next generation of new nuclear power stations due to Salmond’s pie in the sky energy policy.
“The First Minister is hanging on to the coat tails of the UK Government on the nuclear question without giving clear indication to the Scottish people what safeguards he has in place for the long term.
“The renewables factor will not sustain our energy requirements. It is time the pressure groups and politicians who continually put down the nuclear sector come clean as to how they would address our energy needs in the long term.”
“GMB is clear that a nuclear build programme is vital to the Scottish economy. It has a proven track record of clean and carbon free vital for the balanced energy policy Scotland needs.
“There is a fantastic opportunity for job growth within the area which will create a new wealth of apprenticeships for the future with technical experience and the creation of thousands of jobs within the construction sector alongside a multi-billion pound boost for the economy.”
South of Scotland MSP Paul Wheelhouse (SNP), responded: “As much as I respect nuclear science and the skilled workers in the industry, latest plants commissioned by the UK Government for England will be horrendously expensive and we already face a multi-billion pound clear up bill for disposal of radioactive waste legacy of existing stations.
“These are just some of the reasons why the SNP Scottish Government is steadfast in its opposition to construction of new nuclear power stations in Scotland.
“The GMB are completely wrong in their assessment of renewable opportunities and ignore the exciting opportunities to generate engineering jobs in relation to offshore wind, wave and tidal energy projects in Scotland. The Scottish Parliament’s Energy, Economy and Tourism Committee, chaired by Conservative Murdo Fraser MSP, concluded that the SNP Scottish Government’s renewables route map and 100% target by 2020 was ‘achievable’.”