Greens to declare climate emergency

Scottish Greens Environment and Climate Spokesperson Mark Ruskell MSP will today (27 March) lead a debate calling on the Scottish Parliament to declare a climate emergency.

Mr Ruskell will highlight a recent report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which shows that we have just over ten years left to take the bold and urgent action required to keep global temperatures below 1.5 degrees Celsius, and he’ll praise the work of the young people in Scotland and beyond who have been taking part in school strikes to highlight the issue.

The Greens will urge parliament to recognise its moral duty to take bold action in the interests of future generations, as well as those on the front line of climate breakdown. They will also call on the Scottish Government to acknowledge that maximum economic recovery of oil and gas is incompatible with tackling the climate emergency, and call on Ministers to introduce a legislative ban on fracking.

Mark Ruskell MSP said:

“Young people in Scotland and across the world have been an inspiration, walking out of classes to highlight the threat posed by the climate emergency, and urging governments to take the bold action required to address it. 

“The IPCC has given us a decade to bring emissions down to a level where we can keep global temperature rises below 1.5 degrees, to miss that objective would be to condemn millions to misery and bring widespread collapse of our natural world. This is a climate emergency.

“If we are serious about tackling this crisis head on, there needs to be an acknowledgement that maximum economic extraction of oil and gas cannot happen. We can’t burn all the reserves we already know about, and we should not kid ourselves on that further exploration is a responsible option.

“Communities all over Scotland who’ve fought back against fracking will be deeply frustrated at the news of yet more delay from the Scottish Government.

“QC legal advice is clear that Scotland has the powers to implement a legally watertight ban on this destructive and unsustainable process and the Government should get on with doing that. Greens will give MSPs the chance to back that call in Parliament today.

“Instead the focus should be on a just transition to a renewables backed economy in which, we know, hundreds of thousands of new jobs can be created.”