Sunday, 17 October 2010

The Crown Estate.

This is an extract from a speech to the SNP Conference in Perth today by the Minister for Rural Affairs and the Environment, Richard Lockhead MSP calling on the Crown Estates to be devolved so that the benefits of offshore renewable energy projects accrue to the Scottish economy.
"And Conference, just as our seas provide us with food, they are now set to power our nation with clean energy.

"It is reckoned that offshore wind alone could help provide 28,000 jobs by 2020.
"And this Party wants to see the people of Scotland enjoy all the benefits of the renewablerevolution – and that means the revenues as well as the energy.

"The Scottish Government is working well with the Crown Estate Commissioners to
develop offshore renewable.

"Right now however, the Crown Estate is the only public body that accrues direct benefit from the development of renewables in our waters.

"Did you know that, since devolution, it is estimated that around £100m raised by the
Crown Estate Commissioners in Scotland has been posted to the UK Treasury by-passing
Scotland?

"Conference, the UK Government has taken £269 billion in oil and gas revenues since
1976 and has squandered that wealth.

"Conference, we say, never again!

"We now have a Scottish Parliament and the Crown Estate Commissioner should be
answerable to Scotland – not the UK Treasury.

"And we now have the Lib Dems in power in London.

"The same Lib Dems whose MSPs and MPs are still issuing press releases calling for the Crown Estate’s powers to be devolved.

"So, today, I am laying down the challenge to them to deliver on their promises and, if they do, they will have the full cooperation of the Scottish Government.

"And I can reveal that I am writing to the Crown Estate Commissioners calling on them to consult with Scottish Ministers before selling off any more assets.

"Recently, it has been revealed that they have sold off commercial and other properties. As a sign of goodwill, I hope that there will not be any further sales without consulting the Scottish Government until the future of the Crown Estate is settled.

"But my challenge to the Scottish Secretary is clear – don’t be feart, be bold and keep your promise - devolve the Crown Estate to Scotland!

The arguments made in this speech apllies equally to Wales as it does to Scotland. The devolvement of the Crown Estates and the creation of renewable energy jobs should be a key theme in Plaid Cymru's Assemble Election manifesto.

2 comments:

Plaid Whitegate said...

In fairness, Plaid's conference last month heard a very similar argument
http://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/wales-news/2010/09/11/wales-natural-resources-stolen-for-england-s-power-needs-91466-27245354/

Plaid Gwersyllt said...

Ia ddarllenais i hwn ond y gwir ydy, be da ni'n neud am dan y peth? Soniodd Salmond am hyn yn ei araith hefyd, felly mae angen ni symud hefo'n gilydd ar hwn a drwy bod y Fib Dems yn cefnogi fo hefyd.