Patrick-looking-up-reduced-size-SMALLPatrick Harvie, MSP and Co-convenor of the Scottish Greens, has called on greater clarity from the SNP on the future of fracking in Scotland.

SNP members voted today (16 October) to support the extended moratorium on unconventional oil and gas at party's autumn conference, but decided against turning the moratorium into a permanent ban.

The Scottish Greens have campaigned against fracking since the election in 2011, and continue to call for a full, permanent ban on unconventional oil and gas extraction, including Underground Coal Gasification (UCG).

Patrick said:

"The SNP's moratorium is merely a pause to save the party from making proper decisions on the issue right now, and the motion passed at their conference still leaves the door open to fracking companies. The real test is whether the SNP are willing to give voters any clarity about their intentions before May's election. Greens know that Scotland must move away from the temptation to burn yet more fossil fuels, and put a permanent ban on unconventional oil and gas.

"Sea levels are rising, oil prices are fluctuating and people working in the fossil fuel industry are losing their livelihoods. Scotland has huge potential to develop alternative energy sources, and fracking is nothing but a  distraction from focusing all our efforts into building a cleaner, safer future. So far, the SNP has overseen an increase in renewables, but remains committed to the fossil fuel economy as well. Every single climate change target has been missed, and that won't change unless policy changes.

“The Scottish Greens want to see greater security for Scotland’s communities, and we will continue to argue for a permanent ban on fracking and proper investment in long-term jobs in renewables and other industries of the future.”