Page last updated at 23:17 GMT, Sunday, 7 September 2008 00:17 UK

Nuclear option 'must be examined'

Dounreay
Dounreay in Caithness is currently being decommissioned

Scotland needs to consider creating a new generation of nuclear power plants to ensure energy security, according to a group of business leaders.

The Scottish Chambers of Commerce (SCC) has called for a plan to project energy demand over the next 20 years and match this with energy supply.

Prime Minister Gordon Brown has called for more nuclear investment to help break the "dictatorship of oil".

The SNP is opposed to new nuclear power stations, preferring renewable energy.

SCC chief executive Liz Cameron said: "No potential source of energy should be ruled out, including nuclear.

We believe that nuclear power must remain as a key option for a new generation of reactors in Scotland
Scottish Chambers of Commerce
"Future renewable opportunities are extremely exciting for Scotland with new developments in wave and tidal power supplementing existing wind generation.

"The strategic plan must recognise that these will be vitally important to maintaining Scotland's energy self-sufficiency, security of supply and conservation measures.

"However that security depends upon all options being on the table."

Speaking to business leaders in Glasgow last week, the prime minister said the UK had to increase investment in both nuclear and renewable sources.

The Department for Business is currently undertaking a "strategic siting assessment process" to identify a list of possible sites for new nuclear projects.

The SCC has just submitted a paper to Holyrood's Economy, Energy and Tourism Committee - which is carrying out an inquiry into energy.

The paper states: "Given the low greenhouse gas emissions of this [nuclear] generating technology and advances in decommissioning and nuclear waste disposal technologies, we believe that nuclear power must remain as a key option for a new generation of reactors in Scotland before the existing facilities reach the end of their lifespan."


SEE ALSO
Ministers plot UK nuclear future
12 Jun 08 |  Science/Nature
Brown expands nuclear ambitions
28 May 08 |  UK Politics
Scotland 'should get nuclear say'
07 Mar 06 |  Scotland
Nuclear power 'is off the agenda'
23 Mar 05 |  Scotland

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