THE Government says it wants to eliminate the sale of petrol and diesel cars in 20 years’ time and go for completely electric vehicles. Well, we’re going to need a lot of extra electricity-generating facilities. Take a current electric car, the Nissan Leaf. The longer-range version has a battery capable of storing 30kWh electricity giving it a practical range of around 100 to 120 miles. At present the average car travels about 10,000 miles per year, so the Leaf would need to store roughly 3MWh of electric energy per year, or about 8 kWh per day.

If we still have about 25 million cars on the road in 20 years’ time, the electric energy required would therefore be around 200 GWh per day. Taking into account transmission losses and battery charging efficiency, I think you would need 12 to 15 GW of continuously available generating capacity. That’s about 10 new nuclear power stations the size of Torness, or four new Hinkley Points. Need to start building something soon.

With all that battery capacity in electric cars, maybe the energy storage problem could be solved by being plugged into the network when not in use.
Hugh Walker

Loading article content


We are free from jail but there is work to be done

ANGIE Zelter and I were released from prison yesterday, and it wasn’t till then, when I saw my first newspaper, that I was able to appreciate the coverage and support given by The National.

So, the first thing I want to do with my newly regained freedom is to express my gratitude to you. Yours is the only daily paper that supports independence and holds a principled anti-Trident position.

This, and the high quality of your regular journalists, makes your paper truly unique and justifies my constant promotion among friends and strangers alike of The National. You have become a major player in the struggle to get rid of Trident and gain independence for Scotland.

So, my heartfelt thanks to you.

I would also like to say a big thank you to the many people who sent letters and post cards of encouragement to me in jail. The arrival of these really was the highlight of my day, and brought considerable relief of the tedium of imprisonment.

When I was freed in Dumbarton I could not go back to my cell in Low Moss prison and had to rely on a prison officer to clear it and bring my accumulated papers to me. Some things got lost in this process, among them a three-page letter that I had put aside to answer when liberated. I don’t remember the name of the sender, only that he works for [those with] autism. So if he sees this and sends me another copy, I can reply to him.

Meanwhile, there’s work to be done. I have a trial on October 12 to prepare for, and must redouble my efforts to send Trident back to hell where it came from.
Brian Quail

SO, just over a year since the small majority of citizens decided to commit the UK to becoming a basket case, our erstwhile heroic Home Secretary Amber Rudd decides it would be a wizard wheeze to commission a study of the economic impact of ending free movement of EU workers. Well pardon me for saying this Amber, but don’t you think this could and should have been carried out BEFORE you held your now disastrous referendum?

If you and your Tory puppets had bothered to read the increasingly relevant and pertinent Scotland’s Place In Europe document, you and they would have seen that right from the get-go, our Scottish Government was aware of and tried to highlight the very issue Rudd has belatedly gotten round to investigate.

I quote the relevant passage below in case she is interested: “Scotland’s remote and rural communities depend on workers from the EU in a range of sectors, with tourism providing more than 200,000 jobs in total. The paper argues that free movement of people is also vital for essential public services. Approximately three per cent of health and social care staff in Scotland are from other EU countries.”

It is not rocket science to anyone living outside of the Westminster and the south-east of Englandshire to realise that rural, manufacturing and the health and care sectors have always and will always need EU labour. Seasonal labour markets exist also which have to be considered. So why has it taken the Westminster Government so long to realise this is going to become a massive problem? Could it be that reality has finally shone a beacon of light upon their tattered and tawdry plans (if they can be classed as that) for Brexit?

I suspect so, and they may also have realised that the country as a whole is slowly waking up to the fact that the drivel and fake news fed daily from the right-wing press and media is exactly that...FAKE! and that we are in reality going to hell in a handcart. A subtle change of attitude in the nation cannot be covered up by these media outlets for ever, and as the groundswell gathers momentum, and daily we read reports of further areas that will be adversely affected by their stupid decision the Conservative Government will begin to fear for their position, and then, and only then, might we see the change of heart and rethink on the whole Brexit fiasco.

Then, just as one thinks that this is in fact the case, normal service is resumed from this ship of fools and u Then up pops Immigration Minister Brandon Lewis who confidently predicts that the UK will have a shiny new immigration policy in place by 2019 (yeah right, Brandon). It has taken them this long to commission a study on the issues, what chance them acting on any recommendations and implementing them before that time ... no chance! In the meantime we are haemorrhaging vital workers to Scotland’s economy and society which are not being replaced by this La La Land Westminster Government, workers who are also citizens of our nation and cannot be replaced as the situation stands at the moment.

Wake up Scotland and see the disaster that is coming to us all, we need to urgently embrace independence as the only way forward and leave HMS Brexit to flounder on the rocks.
Ade Hegney

I READ with interest your article on the new Scottish Government plans to halt the decline in bees and butterflies (Ten-year plan to save bees and butterflies, The National, July 27).

Surely there is a lot which our councils and public bodies could do right now? Over the recent weeks I have seen numerous examples of council mowers cutting down vegetation rich in flowers on large areas of ground to which the public would not normally have access. They also send out tractors to cut back the edges of country roads, the centres of large roundabouts and the like where all the expense and effort is actually of no benefit to the public or traffic safety.

At places where vision is affected by long grass limited mowing could still be carried out. Considerable savings to public funds could be made.

Then there is the question of other bodies – the water industry being one as it cuts the areas surrounding reservoirs and similar installations to which there usually is no public access.

A complete waste of time and money, and doing the planet no favours.So come on Environment Secretary Roseanna Cunningham, let’s get going.

George M Mitchell
Sheriffmuir, Dunblane