It is becoming more and more obvious that some SIC councillors and unelected officials are suffering from what I call Emperor’s New Clothes Syndrome. Those of you who are familiar with that particular Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale will know where I am coming from with that description.
First it was the aptly named Viking Energy, currently plundering our birth right and laying waste to the environment with a vengeance. Then it was Orion, named after a mythological Greek hunter who was annihilated for boasting that he could kill every animal on the earth and memorialised as a constellation.
Now there is talk of turning the small, fragile islands of Shetland into an energy hub with the entire associated infrastructure that would be required to support such a venture.
Every Tom, Dick and Harry are now washing up on our shores with their own new ‘Big Idea’ and claiming that they have the answer for offsetting the effects of climate change.
There is no joined-up thinking, no intelligent plan in place. Instead we have a complete and utter dog’s dinner of disparate ideas that, individually, are not to scale or fit for purpose for these Islands and collectively would be catastrophic for the economy and environment of Shetland.
The disproportionate burden of achieving so-called zero carbon targets cannot be laid on the shoulders of a remote island community. It is all very well saying that we must do our bit but it seems that Shetland, its environment, the people who live here and even their very livelihoods are considered to be expendable in the process.
Individuals and companies, who see it as a means of making a profit, are exploiting this state of affairs to the maximum, whatever the cost. It is high time that the SIC take stock of the situation and get in touch with reality before any more damage is done.
In case anyone is still under the illusion that all these destructive projects are a necessary evil, I will leave you with a quote from a potential wind farm developer. “I’m not going to pretend that we are trying to save the planet. It’s all about money”.