Responding to news of the decision to drop the Cockenzie energy park plans, Fiona O’Donnell, Scottish Labour candidate for East Lothian, said:
“I welcome the news that Scottish Enterprise and the Scottish Government have dropped their plans for an energy park at Cockenzie. It was clear that the proposal could not command the support of local communities, so this is absolutely the right decision.
“I’m very pleased to have worked alongside local campaigners and Iain Gray MSP to ensure that the views of the communities affected by the proposed changes have been heard. Listening to the communities and their aspirations for the area must now be central to alternative plans for the site.”
Iain Gray MSP said:
“This plan was always part of the Scottish government’s energy strategy, which is proving to be highly unrealistic. From the beginning I said that this proposal was not just inappropriate for the site, but depended on a rapid expansion of offshore wind projects. That is just not happening, and as a result neither is the Energy Park.
“This was always a misguided project, of a scale unnecessary for the sector and unacceptable for the local community who made their opposition very clear. It is very welcome then that common sense has prevailed, and the proposal withdrawn. Local residents will be rightly delighted by the decision.
“I have been supporting the petition against the energy park in the Scottish parliament, and I am delighted that the petition will no longer be required! Of course we do have to find a use for this site which provides jobs to replace those we have lost at the power station and elsewhere, without destroying the entire local amenity. “