Readers' letters: Selling off energy sector was a mistake

It’s hard to imagine a worse government than the UK’s. Crumbling public services, soaring interest rates, a new round of austerity, rising poverty, record inflation, fuel and food insecurity, a disastrous Brexit, falling life expectancy….
Where Art I! Edinburgh Sketcher, 5 December 2022Where Art I! Edinburgh Sketcher, 5 December 2022
Where Art I! Edinburgh Sketcher, 5 December 2022

This staggering incompetence is most evident in the Tory destruction of the UK energy sector. Selling off a nation’s energy assets to private corporations who don’t care about long-term stability or energy security is criminal.

Every citizen is being held hostage by private energy company profiteering. This winter, millions will be cold, hungry and thousands will die.

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Six companies control over threequarters of the UK household energy market. Three are controlled from France (EDF), Germany (EON, npower) and Spain (Scottish Power)

Electricity prices are soaring in the UK, worsened by privatisationElectricity prices are soaring in the UK, worsened by privatisation
Electricity prices are soaring in the UK, worsened by privatisation

Over the last decade, these six companies have paid £23 billion in dividends. Billions of pounds have gone abroad that would have stayed here had these companies remained in public ownership.

Ofgem’s weak regulation has encouraged profiteering and underinvestment. As a result, the UK has insufficient electricity generation capacity and must rely on imports, making it hugely vulnerable to price shocks.

It’s insane that energy-rich Scotland is paying some of the highest electricity prices in the world when it produces enough renewable energy to power its own needs three times over.

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Donald Dewar foresaw the disastrous consequences of privatising Scotland’s electricity industry. “Privatisation of electricity is no more than asset-stripping. The (UK) Government are living like spendthrifts, selling the future to finance today’s expenditure.”

The UK is a political, not a territorial union. Westminster has plundered resources belonging to the Scottish people who should be warm, well-fed and secure. The fact they aren’t is why this union must end.

Leah Gunn Barrett, Edinburgh

Boring football reflects anthem

The use of God Save The King as the boring national anthem for a boring England football team that has played in the most no-scoring draws in World Cup history is typical of metropolitan arrogance, including the BBC, that thinks England is Britain.

Not even the North Korean anthem glorifies its head of state and certainly doesn’t evoke the crushing of one constitutent part of the country.

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The archaic British monarchy is only supported by a minority in Scotland and as an institution is badly in need of modernisation as does the UK constitution that allows London governments to become an elected dictatorship.

Fraser Grant, Edinburgh

Deposit scheme could tackle vape waste

Smoking vapes is anti-social as those puffing clouds of unpleasant air have no regard for other pedestrians as they stand outside pubs and eating places.

Lithium batteries are a fire risk. London Transport has banned e-scooters from its rail and transport network. Some towns in Germany have banned electric cars from underground parking.

It was thought that the fire and sinking of the Felicity Ace outside of the Azores, which was carrying thousands of electric cars, was caused by the EVs' lithium batteries.

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The Scottish government is forcing through an unpopular and unnecessary bottle return scheme, so why not charge a £1 deposit on every e-vape?

Buying 10 with a deposit of £10 would stop them littering the streets and ending up in landfill.

Clark Cross, Linlithgow

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