UK Energy and Climate Change Secretary Chris Huhne has been branded ‘brazen and dishonest’ after insisting that he was never an opponent of nuclear energy.
Claiming that he has never changed his stance on atomic power, Mr Huhne said “My views have always been misunderstood…we are on course to make sure that the first new nuclear power station opens on time in 2018.”
However, in contrast, a press release on Mr Huhne’s website quotes the Liberal Democrat saying: “Our message is clear, No to nuclear, as it is not a short cut, but a dead end.”
In another statements on his website, Mr Huhne says: “Ministers must stop the side-show of new nuclear power stations now. Nuclear is a tired, tested and failed technology and the government must stop putting time, effort and subsidies into reviving this outdated industry.”
Commenting, SNP Westminster Energy spokesperson Mike Weir MP said:
“The way Chris Huhne has reversed his position on new nuclear is brazen and dishonest. From being unequivocal in his opposition to atomic energy, he has now become a cheerleader and champion for it.
“This is yet another example of how the Liberal Democrats cannot be trusted – they said one thing in opposition, but do the complete opposite in government.
“Chris Huhne well knows that nowhere in the world has a nuclear reactor been built without public money, and it is highly unlikely that any new reactors can be built in the UK without massive public investment.
“The Coalition government claim that there will be no public investment in new nuclear, but at the same time are planning to put a floor on the carbon price in an effort to make nuclear financially viable. This is nothing less than a hidden public subsidy.
“Nuclear energy has in the past swallowed vast sums of public money, and the clean up of its past mess continues to cost the taxpayer dearly. There is absolutely no case for continuing to pour public money into this bottomless pit. We should be looking to developing clean green energy to provide a safe and sustainable energy future.”