Readers' letters: Trolleybuses are better than trams

The disruption, cost and carbon dioxide generated by reopening Edinburgh's tram service after 66 years is not justified by the environmental gains, especially as not all the energy used to operate journeys will be sustainably produced.

Electric trolleybus in Limoges, France
Electric trolleybus in Limoges, France

A much quicker and less disruptive solution, with a fraction of the emissions, would have been via a fleet of the latest electric trolleybuses. These are rubber-tyred, so the tracks would not have been needed.

They cause zero disruption to other traffic, and can use batteries to leave the overhead cables and visit all parts of the city.

Trolleybuses could have been introduced in a matter of months, since the only additional equipment required would have been overhead power cables, which can be installed in a few weeks. The admittedly slightly smaller vehicle capacity compared with heavy trams would have been a small price to pay for a rapid install period and an immediate reduction in diesel fumes, congestion and travel times.

The big question is: did Edinburgh Council consider them, if not, why not? And if they did, why on earth were they not chosen? It beggars belief.

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I hope the so-called inquiry spends some of its money investigating the competence of the decision makers who spent our money.

Bruce Whitehead, Queensferry.

SNP are failing to manage the accounts

This week we have been reading about a likely increase in the number of Scottish residents dying this winter because they can’t afford the energy costs and/or increasing food costs, but it doesn’t have to be that way.

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Earlier this year Nicola Sturgeon flew her entourage to America on a vanity trip. How many people on low incomes have seen any improvement in their standard of living as a result of that trip? Couldn’t a Zoom meeting have been just as productive?

It is widely reported that tens of millions of pounds have been set aside for civil servants to prepare for a second referendum on separation, something we all know isn’t going to happen any time soon.

Last week a newspaper reported that money earmarked for Covid recovery, but not spent on that, was being used for the Calmac ferry programme.

The SNP must have been a good protest group, they became the government. Now that they are in power, they demonstrate on a daily basis, that they have no idea how to responsibly manage the accounts of this country.

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As night follows day, so winter will come. If the SNP can not control their frivolous spending then this winter could be the last many of us will see.

Bruce Proctor, Stonehaven.

Safe Zones Bill is unnecessary

The Gillian Mackay “Safe Zones” Bill seeks to criminalise, fine and imprison people who are law-abiding to a fault and have never had any intention of causing hindrance, intimidation or harassment to anyone, certainly not to vulnerable women.

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The promoters of this Bill have taken no account of the fact that vigil groups and individuals have for years operated according to a strict protocol precisely to prevent such behaviour, which would in any case be an infringement of existing law.

The basis for this unnecessary Bill is entirely fabricated and one can only guess at what lies behind it.

We strongly urge all people of good will to register opposition to the Bill in the final days of the consultation period.

John and Helen Holden, Dalkeith.

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