Orkney’s SNP candidate for the Scottish elections, Robert Leslie said that the move to import 80,000 tonnes of stone from a quarry on the Scottish mainland was clearly environmentally unsustainable on top of being economically damaging.
Mr Leslie said: “A local authority that has declared a climate emergency and which oversees a World Heritage Site made up of some of the most famous stone structures on the planet should definitely be ‘shopping local’ when it comes to its construction stone. The builders of the Ring of Brodgar must be spinning in their burial chambers.
“Quite apart from the economic argument for sourcing such building materials from within the islands, especially at a time when every local job is precious, it is environmentally unsound to instigate a stone supply chain that will increase our carbon footprint.
“Many Orkney Islands Council departments have engaged positively with the recent Sustainable Orkney Conference, a report from which is due in the near future. The online event was partly aimed at setting a baseline from which to plan our answer to the challenge of the climate emergency. Decarbonisation is a key piece of work for Orkney as a community, helping Scotland meet its net zero emissions target by 2045, and our local authority should be setting an example through its actions.”