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Arctic Yearbook 2012
Norwegian plants) and an Arctic strategy would have to demonstrate why Scotland should be
preferred, perhaps emphasising relatively low labour costs and good transport connections to
European markets.
Renewable Energy
Scotland currently meets 1/3 of electricity supply through renewable energy and the Scottish
government has a target of 100% by 2020 (Scottish Government, 2011c). The SNP is fundamentally
opposed to the construction of new nuclear power stations, in contrast to plans to build a further
eight elsewhere in the UK (ibid;
New UK Nuclear Plant Sites Named). An Arctic strategy for
Scotland would seek to develop cooperation and the exchange of technologies with the Arctic states
in particular in wind and hydro-power. Subsea power cables connecting Scotland to the High North
are also mooted (Scottish Government, 2011b). Scottish renewable energy businesses should be
encouraged in developments in the High North but Scotland must also be reciprocally open to
accepting investment and technology from its northern neighbours.
Living Marine Resources
Scotland’s longstanding fisheries currently constitute 68% of the UK’s catch (compare 8.4% of the
UK population) and contribute over 400 million GBP annually to the Scottish economy (SNP 2007;
Scottish Government, 2011b). They are governed through the EU’s Common Fisheries Policy (CFP)
where Scotland does not have an independent voice or vote. Scotland’s fisheries have traditionally
been based in the rich territorial waters and exclusive economic zone (EEZ), in contrast to the
distance water fisheries based in North East England which creates at best divided loyalties in the
UK’s negotiations in Brussels. The SNP’s expressed policy is to defend Scottish interests against
further centralisation of control in Europe and, as long as the current constitutional settlement
stands, to fight for better representation at the EU (SNP, 2007).
The Scottish government has a dedicated Action Plan for the Marine and Fisheries Sector under its
broader Climate Change Adaptation Framework which addresses threats and opportunities – from
unpredictable weather, new species (some of which may be harvestable; others a threat to existing
stocks), changes to migration patterns and potential loss of indigenous species (Scottish Government,
2011d). Scotland hopes to influence the CFP seeking “increased flexibility and adaptability” (ibid: 10).
Certainly, the CFP will have to respond quickly to increasing and depleting stocks, and changed
migratory routes in and out of EEZs and the high seas (Eskeland & Flottorp, 2007). Although there