Energy is once more at the top of the news agenda.

Last week we exclusively revealed that UK Government ministers would not be stepping in to save the Grangemouth oil refinery.

Read that report here 👈

And in another exclusive, we reported today that Scottish and UK government officials knew of moves that would lead to the closing of Scotland's only refinery for “well over a year” before details of the transition finally emerged.

Read that report here

Today one of our readers argues that Scotland is getting a raw deal over the processing of energy and its export.

Alasdair Galloway of Dumbarton writes:

"Martin Williams’ report that the UK Government will not intervene “to save Scotland's only oil refinery” at Grangemouth is not a great surprise, as if one examines the processing of energy and its export they are not activities to be undertaken in Scotland.

It is not surprising as not only is the only oil refinery to be allowed to close, but if one examines where energy interconnectors (transporting electricity between countries) with continental Europe reach UK landfall, there is none that is north of Middlesborough. Or to put this another way, if the plentiful but also renewable, ecologically-positive energy generated in Scotland is to be exported it simply has to pass through England.

Read a selection of those letters here 👈

In that regard is it not a particularly striking irony that North Sea revenues over two years are forecast “to soar to £17.2bn”? Ten years after forecasters and the London government were lining up to inquire what an independent Scotland would do when the oil fields were dry? Well, I think we would look forward to spending that £17.2 billion?

However, back in reality, does this not support the conclusion that where production of energy is concerned, advantageous downstream activities such as processing (where the jobs are) and exporting (where the money is) are not matters for Scotland? Scotland can produce the raw material, but neither process nor export it.

Those activities, and the economic advantages that accompany them, will be undertaken elsewhere.

Is it possible that Scotland is the only country in the world that has such enormous advantages in the production of energy, yet our capacity to exploit this is restricted by political decisions. Consider what happens in Norway with its oil, with its government participation agreements resulting in a gargantuan "Pension Fund". It is though especially important to be aware of the contrast of the Norwegian "planned for community advantage" approach to energy production and the laissez-fair, Dodge City approach of a succession of UK governments."