No More Pylons In Dalmally Meeting

Michael Russell met local residents in Dalmally on the 5th April

On his blipfoto blog he says;

I was in Dalmally this morning in my role as the local MSP for Argyll & Bute meeting local residents who are opposed to plans by SSE for a high voltage transmission line on pylons through the village and through some of Scotland’s most dramatic scenery.

Dalmally Public Meeting

The village is no stranger to the issue. It already has a high voltage line running through it, which I blipped six years ago. It has been there since the Cruanchan Power Station was established and everyone accepts that this electricity is needed and that Argyll is fortunate in being able to export it.
The new line will allow much more renewable energy to flow to other parts of Scotland but there is a virtually unanimous view that , no matter how important that is, the actual line must be put underground or under the loch. It should not further disfigure the landscape nor surround houses and indeed whole communities.

Local people are also unimpressed with the consultation by SSE to date. Some have found out that their fields are to have pylons in them only when they saw a mock up at an event in the village hall. Others have still not been contacted and although there has been widespread concern since the idea was first mooted two years ago there has been far too little firm information and far too little explanation of the options.

Although the meeting had to be held at 10.00 am because of other commitments I had today this group is only part of the total turn out. I have no doubt that the feeling against the current proposals is virtually unanimous and I therefore hope that SSE will recognise that proceeding without significant change isn’t an option.

The No More Pylons In Dalmally Facebook Group. are asking locals to submit their feedback directly to SSE Here.




Full details below;


Dear Avich & Kilchrenan Community Voter
You will have heard that SSE Nestwork (SSEN) came with a team of ten to present their Roadshow at Kilchrenan village hall on Tuesday 20th March.

You might wonder what all that fuss was about, so here is a proper briefing from your Community Council.
SSEN have identified their preferred route for a 275 thousand volt overhead power line to run from a new large substation above Port Sonachan/Cladich across to the Cruachan substation situated across the mouth of the Orchy river in front of Dalmally.

This power line will be visible from our side of Loch Awe.
You will be wondering why they want do this, something which is not at all well explained in their presentation, as the substation itself does not yet exist and has no planning consent.
Here is what your Community Council now believes is the true underlying explanation: SSEN is the licensee for electrical power transmission in Argyll, and as such has an obligation to ensure that Distributed Generation of renewable energy from windfarms and hydro projects have viable pathways to export their peak power output to the National Grid.
All of that power needs to get out of Argyll somehow, which is tricky because Argyll is surrounded by seawater except up here round the top of Loch Fyne.
The only large capacity power lines used to be the 132kV ones bringing power into Argyll via Loch Sloy. ( These are now run in “reverse” a lot of the time to get power out, obviously power lines are always fully bi-directional.). When Cruachan was commissioned, it needed its own dedicated 275kV line which sent short bursts of huge proportions instantaneously on demand literally to keep the Grid up to speed when national demand peaked. Almost all of the time it is not in use at all.

In the past couple of years a subsea line has been added by SSEN from Crossaig at the mouth of Loch Fyne across to Hunterston to feed the Grid through there.
However SSEN claim to see that the two existing pathways, Sloy plus subsea, will not be sufficient to handle peak output as more large windfarms are added in Argyll.

They therefore wish to utilise the Cruachan line as well, as a third pathway in the first instance.

They have also decided that they will upgrade their own transmission network within Argyll from 132kV to 275kV, which increases enormously the power carrying capacity of the lines. We believe they also have in mind in due course to remove the old 132kV Sloy line as their updated network standardizes on 275kV.
However, all that has been publicly declared by SSEN so far is the new 275kV line proposal with a cosmetic choice of routings on offer varying by a few hundred metes here and there.

You will also be wondering how all of this relates to the Upper Sonachan large windfarm application, which is about to be decided very soon. If this windfarm is consented, its peak output, in the 50-60 megawatts range, is too great for the present local network to handle in addition to Carraig Ghael. SSEN under their transmission licence are obligated to offer some kind of grid connection to the Distributed Generator, which in this case is EcoTricity.

Your Community Council believes that the 275kV power line proposal is SSEN’s “two birdswith one stone” solution. In the first stage, the new line makes it easy to get the new windfarm’s power out to the grid, but at the same time it gets in place the first plank of a new 275kV “Superhighway”, intended to supplant and replace the old route via Sloy.

The new line’s capacity would be sufficient for at least ten Upper Sonachan sized large windfarms.
The second stage would be the upgrading of the existing 132kV line from Inveraray up to the new substation at Cladich to operate at 275kV.

The lines from Crossaig to Inveraray up the coast of Loch Fyne look set to be consented for a Reinforcement of the pylons to take 275kV cabling.
The final result of all this would be that the entire DG output of Argyll beyond Loch Fyne (but minus the subsea line’s relatively modest capacity), will be routed past our noses across to Dalmally.
It also has to be understood that the new large substation, which has a twelve football pitch sized “footprint”, will not become superfluous once the line back to Inveraray upgrades to 275kV, because the onward Distribution line which crosses Loch Awe will be retained at 132kV, and this is also used to get Carraig Ghael’s peak power output back out.


The public consultation process used by SSEN is so narrow that it makes a mockery of the term. A proper consultation presents true choices ( not cosmetic ones) then makes the case for the preferred alternative to be chosen from those true choices.
It must be said that a great proportion of what we now know and which is explained above, has been gleaned from open and honest interaction and responses from SSEN. However, very little of it is addressed in the public consultation process.
In particular, they have admitted that the preferred option was developed using a basic presumption that because the old 132kV lines crossed National Park land, so the option to upgrade these lines to 275kV was rejected out of hand, without even contacting the National Park. The key point is that such an upgrade would render the Dalmally line superfluous.
However if Upper Sonachan windfarm is consented that would require a Reinforcement back down to Inveraray from 132kV to 275kV and that would necessitate the substation at Cladich ( but not the new line across to Dalmally ). If it is not consented, neither substation nor Reinforcement back to Inveraray would be needed as long as the old Sloy lines are upgraded to 275kV and remain as the main land pathway for renewables power export out of Argyll.

How Much Data Are You Sharing?

This is something everyone who uses the internet needs to consider.
As a website and app developer it does worry me when I see friends and family sharing third-party apps and freely giving their data away for access to them.
You wouldn’t give your date of birth, pets names and mothers maiden name to a stranger in the street, but many do so over and over again online, leaving themselves open to identity theft and fraud.
As a Mother, I  would often google my (now adult) children and let them know how much I found and would warn them about their security.
As teenagers, they hated it, but now young adults, they understand why I “stalked” them online.
I found the thread  below by Dylan Curran on Twitter.
Dylan goes through his Google footprint in great detail.
But first, it may be pure coincidence that this also appeared in my feed at the same time?
Angus Robertson raised concerns about the storage of personal information online on BBC Questiontime.

Below is the full thread By Dylan Curran

Want to freak yourself out? I’m gonna show just how much of your information the likes of Facebook and Google store about you without you even realising it
1.… Google stores your location (if you have it turned on) every time you turn on your phone, and you can see a timeline from the first day you started using Google on your phone
2. This is every place I have been in the last twelve months in Ireland, going in so far as the time of day I was in the location and how long it took me to get to that location from my previous one
3. Google stores search history across all your devices on a separate database, so even if you delete your search history and phone history, Google STILL stores everything until you go in and delete everything, and you have to do this on all devices
4. Google creates an advertisement profile based on your information, including your location, gender, age, hobbies, career, interests, relationship status, possible weight (need to lose 10lbs in one day?) and income
5. Google stores information on every app and extension you use, how often you use them, where you use them, and who you use them to interact with (who do you talk to on facebook, what countries are you speaking with, what time you go to sleep at)…
6.… Google stores ALL of your YouTube history, so they know whether you’re going to be a parent soon, if you’re a conservative, if you’re a progressive, if you’re Jewish, Christian, or Muslim, if you’re feeling depressed or suicidal, if you’re anorexic…
7. Google offers an option to download all of the data it stores about you, I’ve requested to download it and the file is 5.5GB BIG, which is roughly 3 MILLION Word documents
8. This link includes your bookmarks, emails, contacts, your Google Drive files, all of the above information, your YouTube videos, the photos you’ve taken on your phone, the businesses you’ve bought from, the products you’ve bought through Google…
9. Your calendar, your Google hangout sessions, your location history, the music you listen to, the Google books you’ve purchased, the Google groups you’re in, the websites you’ve created, the phones you’ve owned, the pages you’ve shared, how many steps you walk in a day…
10. Facebook offers a similar option to download all your information, mine was roughly 600mb, which is roughly 400,000 Word documents
11. This includes every message you’ve ever sent or been sent, every file you’ve ever sent or been sent, all the contacts in your phone, and all the audio messages you’ve ever sent or been sent
12. Facebook also stores what it think you might be interested in based off the things you’ve liked and what you and your friends talk about (I apparently like the topic ‘Girl’)
13. Somewhat pointlessly, they also store all the stickers you’ve ever sent on Facebook (I have no idea why they do this, it’s just a joke at this stage)
14. They also store every time you log into Facebook, where you logged in from, what time, and from what device
15. And they store all the applications you’ve ever had connected to your Facebook account, so they can guess I’m interested in politics and web and graphic design, that I was single between X and Y period with the installation of Tinder, and I got a HTC phone in November…
16. Side-note, if you have Windows 10 installed, this is a picture of JUST the privacy options with 16 different sub-menus, which have all of the options enabled by default when you install Windows 10
17. This includes tracking where you are, what applications you have installed, when you use them, what you use them for, access to your webcam and microphone at any time, your contacts, your e-mails, your calendar, your call history, the messages you send and receive…
18. The files you download, the games you play, your photos and videos, your music, your search history, your browsing history, even what RADIO stations you listen to
19. This is one of the craziest things about the modern age, we would never let the government or a corporation put cameras/microphones in our homes or location trackers on us, but we just went ahead and did it ourselves because fuck it I want to watch cute dog videos
20. I got the Google Takeout document with all my information, and this is a breakdown of all the different ways they get your information
21. Here’s the search history document, which has 90,000 different entries, even showing the images I downloaded and the websites I accessed (I showed ThePirateBay section to show much damage this information can do)
22. Here’s my Google Calendar broken down, showing all the events I’ve ever added, whether I actually attended them, and what time I attended them at (this part is what I went for an interview for a Marketing job, and what time I arrived at)
23. This is my Google Drive, which includes files I EXPLICITLY deleted including my resume, my monthly budget, and all the code, files, and websites I’ve ever made, and even my PGP private key, which I deleted, which I use to encrypt e-mails
24. This is my Google Fit, which shows all of the steps I’ve ever taken, any time I walked anywhere, and all the times I’ve recorded any meditation/yoga/workouts I’ve done (I deleted this information and revoked Google Fit’s permissions)
25. This is all the photos ever taken with my phone, broken down by year, and includes metadata of when and where I took the photos
26. Every e-mail I’ve ever sent, that’s been sent to me, including the ones I deleted or were categorised as spam
27. And now my Google Activity, this has thousands of files, so I’ll just do a short summary of what they have
28. Firstly every Google Ad I’ve ever viewed or clicked on, every app I’ve ever launched or used and when I did it, every website I’ve ever visited and what time I did it at, and every app I’ve ever installed or searched for
29. Every image I’ve ever searched for and saved, every location I’ve ever searched for or clicked on, every news article I’ve ever searched for or read, and EVERY SINGLE google search I’ve made since 2009
30. And then finally, every YouTube video I’ve ever searched for or viewed, since 2008
31. I’m probably on an FBI watch-list now, so if I die in the next few months IT WASN’T AN ACCIDENT, IT WAS A SET-UP
32. This information has millions of nefarious uses and violates multiple human rights, you’re not a terrorist? Then how come you were googling ISIS? Work at Google and you’re suspicious of your wife? Perfect, just look up her location and search history for the last ten years
33. Manage to gain access to someone’s Google account? Perfect, you have a chronological diary of everything that person has done for the last ten years


‘Facebook should be regulated like the BBC’, says SNP’s top MP

In the wake of the scandal surrounding Facebook and Cambridge Analytica, centred on the mass harvesting of personal data and the manipulation of voting, Brendan O’Hara, the SNP MP at the heart of the Westminster probe into fake news, said a radical shake-up of the internet was needed to protect the public from the “lawless Wild West” of social media.

Read the full article here

He added: “We have a situation where Facebook can no longer pretend to be this benign fun place where people stick up a photo of their dog and then get followed with a pet food advert as a sort of quid pro quo. There’s now a malicious situation. Facebook can no longer argue it is just a host site. They are publishers and there has to be legislation. We cannot have a Wild West approach…They have to be held responsible.”

FACEBOOK should be subjected to a strict regulation regime similar to that which covers broadcast media such as the BBC, according to one of the…

Source: ‘Facebook should be regulated like the BBC’, says SNP’s top MP

Aye Fyne!

Aye Fyne! Is a growing group of people up and down Loch Fyne, not linked to any political party, just a group of Scottish Independence Supporters getting together to talk, arrange events and help reconnect and re-energise the original Yes Movement.

Aye Fyne Events

Events they are hosting and meetings planned will be added to our calendar.

If you would like to get involved you can follow Aye Fyne on Facebook, click the link on the right of the page to join the Aye Fyne! Discussion Group.

Aye Fyne is also on Twitter

Aye Fyne! Have regular meetings in Lochgilphead, so do pop in for a chat

Scottish Independence, Angus Robertson
Get ready
Yes, Scotland, Aye Fyne!