Letter Ian Fairlie: Labour’s manifesto contains many progressive ideas, especially on climate change and sustainability, but it is let down by its regressive support for nuclear weapons and yet more nuclear power. It states, without justification or explanation, that it will support renewal of Trident nuclear weapons, but adds it would try to negotiate them away “under our obligations to the Non-Proliferation Treaty”. This is double-think. In addition, Trident renewal would cost about £200bn over its lifetime, but that sum is not contained in the manifesto’s so-called “fully costed” proposals. The manifesto states, again with little or no justification, that Labour will build new nuclear power “needed for energy security” but the UK’s uranium has to be imported, often from insecure sources in Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan. New nuclear power is considerably more expensive than the renewables, and millions of people in fuel poverty will suffer. Who would benefit? The nuclear industry, perhaps, shielded from losses by government contracts. Is this what Labour means by “for the many, not the few”? This will likely be a close election and Labour’s ill-considered support for dangerous, absurdly expensive and unpopular nuclear power and nuclear weapons will cost it votes, especially among young people.
Guardian 25th Nov 2019 read more »