Both SNP candidates for the forthcoming local elections have pledged to vote against the plant if elected on May 3.
David Balfour and Andrew Cowie have joined local MSP, Angus MacDonald, who has led the political campaign against the plant since the application was first submitted in 2010.
Last week Grangemouth Community Council took the protest against the proposals to the Scottish Parliament where they were joined by the Falkirk East MSP.
Now the campaign has been given a boost with the declaration from the SNP’s two candidates for the town that if elected they will vote against the proposals.
This contrasts with the deafening silence from the Labour and Tory candidates who have yet to declare their position on what is one of the most important decisions to affect the town for many years.
5000 special leaflets have been printed with 1500 having been distributed in the first day. Speaking to the SNP website Andrew Cowie said,
“If we are seeking the trust of the Grangemouth people we shold be prepared to nail our colours to the mast o important issues and that is exactly what we are doing today.
The people of Grangemouth are telling me on a daily basis they don’t want this plant on our doorsteps and I will do everything possible to ensure that their wishes are met.
What we need is the re-establishment of the Regeneration Working Group that hasn’t met for the last three years under the Labour / Tory coalition. It also requires its remit to be widened to look in depth at the balance between industry and the community as clearly the balance is not correct at the moment.”
SNP Candidate David Balfour also commented saying:
“I have very serious concerns about this proposal. If this biomass plant gets the go-ahead Grangemouth’s air quality, which is already at an unacceptable level, with 761 suplhur dioxide (SO2) exceedences since 2005, could experience further deterioration. We would also be faced with visual impact and sustainablity issues if this plant is approved. In addition, the UK cannot supply plants of this size with the necessary biomass material required. Forth Energy has already admitted the material is to be sourced from North and South America and Russia.
“This proposal does not tick any boxes for me or the electorate in Grangemouth and I will work to ensure Grangemouth is not turned into a dumping ground for an electricity plant nobody else wants. An SNP Council in Falkirk will work with the SNP Government in Edinburgh to ensure the views of the Grangemouth people are taken into account at all times.”
Support for the campaign to block the development of the Biomass Plant from the two prospective Councillors has been welcomed by Falkirk East MSP, Angus MacDonald.
Mr MacDonald said.
“David and Andrew are in tune with the feelings of the people of Grangemouth unlike the Labour and Tory candidates who have yet to come off the fence on this issue.
I am sure that the people of Grangemouth will welcome such a clear statement of intent from our candidates.”