The issue of an interconnector for the Western Isles was raised in the Scottish Parliament at First Minister’s Questions earlier today (Wednesday, March 9th).

Deputy First Minister John Swinney MSP, standing in for First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, outlined the importance of the project to the Scottish Government’s agenda on renewable energy.

He said that the frustration felt by people in the Western Isles over the UK Government’s stalling on this issue had been discussed at Cabinet earlier in the week. 

He also confirmed that the Scottish Government remained committed to making the case to the UK Government for a project that will bring real opportunities to attack fuel poverty and bring about economic benefits.

Commenting, Western Isles MSP Dr Alasdair Allan said: “This is an issue of huge importance to the Western Isles and it is good that this issue continues to be raised publically by Scottish Ministers while we await a decision from the UK Government.

“As I recently argued in my submission to the UK Government’s consultation on the treatment of island wind projects, island renewable projects have the potential to produce some of the cheapest and greenest electricity in the country. 

“There are hundreds of millions of pounds worth of investment from shovel-ready projects across the Western Isles that simply need the necessary infrastructure in place before work can begin.”

He added: “If we are to realise the renewables potential of these islands, the UK Government needs heed the calls being made by the Scottish Government and others.”