Anti-nuclear campaigners have hit out at a bid to build a new nuclear power facility in North Ayrshire.
And they have this week been backed by Scottish Socialist Party candidate for Irvine West, Colin Turbett.
The proposed plant would be a world leader, according to experts and would produce safe, clean energy to help fight climate change with thousands of jobs being created.
But Ayrshire CND spokesman Arthur West said: “This is a prototype nuclear fusion reactor.
“People who are worried about whether fusion will be made to work are against it along with those who want to protect Ardeer and people who want jobs in North Ayrshire before 2040 and people who want £2million to be spent on a project more likely to succeed and with better return.
“People who don’t want to live near a nuclear power station or want to be able to continue using Ardeer for leisure oppose it along with those who don’t want Westminster to decide what happens.
“Locals should have been consulted before the site was put forward.”
Ayrshire CND encourage people to write to the local council, MP and MSPs and Secretary of State, Kwasi Kwarteng.
They can sign a petition at: https://www.change.org/p/uk-atomic-energy-authority-ukaea-prevent-ardeer-fusion-plant
Colin Turbett said: “The local Trades Council were not consulted before the STUC threw their weight behind the proposal and have angrily declared their opposition.
“The council consulted local people earlier this year by publishing a case for the development on their website, and then inviting pledges of support but offering no channel for the register of opposition.
“Whatever way it turns out we will continue to campaign for a nuclear free Scotland – and sustainable sources of power delivered by nationalized companies.”
A North Ayrshire Council spokesperson said: “North Ayrshire Council is one of three partner organizations – alongside the University of Glasgow and NPL Group – who are seeking to bring STEP to Ardeer.
“We believe that Ardeer offers a unique location, can support our commitment to tackle the climate emergency by providing low carbon energy, create thousands of high-quality jobs and act as an economic catalyst for this part of Scotland.”
Tristram Denton, head of commercial and program development for STEP from the UK Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA), said: “Ardeer is one of five sites across the UK shortlisted for STEP, a UKAEA program seeking to pave the way for the development of commercial fusion energy powerplants.
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“It will showcase how a future fusion power station could be operated and maintained and is a significant milestone on the journey to providing the world with a safe and low-carbon energy source for generations to come.
“The chosen STEP site will be selected by the Secretary of State at the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and the final decision is expected later this year.”
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