East Lothian Courier – 10 March 2022


War in the Ukraine’s distressing to watch as tragedy unfolds on our TV screens but the community response is heartening. Many have been in touch seeking strengthened sanctions and increased humanitarian support. Progress is being made on both even if still inadequate and slow.

However, aid agencies are now springing into action and that’ll make it easier for all seeking to do whatever they can to assist. Financial donations can be made through the DEC, as well as other channels, and the logistics and routes for getting clothing and other supplies to those in need are being established.

War comes at a cost and not just for the nations involved and it’ll impact on Scotland. We’ve already seen energy bills go up and now its fuel costs. Prices at the pumps are rising and that’ll impact on everything further adding to the cost of living.

Its why much more needs done. Other nations have done much more than the UK or Scottish Governments. France has capped an increase on regulated electricity costs at 4%. Much better than the doubling many face here. Belgium and Spain have cut VAT. All in all, most if not all, countries have done far more to help those in need and that was before the double whammy of the forecourt hikes.

I’d written to the Treasury asking for a meeting to discuss the energy that’s going to land in East Lothian from the offshore wind fields. That was refused which was rather insulting given it was to be a cross party group including the council. What was more ignorant though was the suggestion in the letter from the Treasury Minister Helen Whately that “East Lothian …has been revitalised by the development of the Beatrice offshore wind project”.

Where or what one might ask? Beatrice is located some 15 miles off Wick, not Innerwick. Its neither close to nor benefitting the county in anyway. It not only shows a substantial ignorance of Scottish geography but a total failure to appreciate that the benefits of the renewable revolution are passing us by. All as energy prices rocket.