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Sunday, October 15, 2006


I have just found this letter was in the Scotsman on 17th August. I don't know why I missed it. It is a gentle piss take on another form of renewable - tidal this time, which i point out is possible the best of a bad lot.
David G Guild's belief that tidal power will provide "serious opposition" to nuclear (Letters, 12 August) shows a logical weakness.

It may be, as he asserts, that the "anti-nuclear" Scottish Executive is ignoring tidal power because it is secretly pro-nuclear, and thus deliberately doing down alternatives. However, a simpler, if less paranoid, answer would be because even the Executive (or at least its advisers) can tell these are rubbish.

The problem with tidal power is that it only provides power for about ten hours each day, when the tide is actually moving in or out. That means you would have to build the nuclear or other stations and then switch them off for these ten hours to give the tidal station something to do. While this is clearly the most "serious" competition any form of "alternative" can give nuclear it isn't very serious.

The largest tidal station in the world was built in Rances by the French, where it performs exactly as advertised. The French then went on to build nuclear reactors to provide 85 per cent of their power at 1.5p a unit. Our own politicians should show such common sense.

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