Labour have just lost a generation of voters with climate betrayal
Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer’s choice to scrap a promised £28bn a year for tackling the climate crisis signals a catastrophic mistake, say the Scottish Greens.
Starmer's decision to cave to Tory climate denialism will leave voters questioning if a future Labour government is ready to lead, with green politicians on both sides of the border offering a more credible alternative.
His decision to break another pre General Election promise comes on the very same day that the Scottish Government’s latest budget commits record sums towards fighting climate, nature and biodiversity crises.
That includes investment decisions geared at creating tens of thousands of green jobs, delivering warmer greener homes and putting boots on the ground to work on peatland restoration, tree planting and other vital environmental work.
It also comes as climate experts revealed that average global temperatures have breached the critical 1.5C safe threshold for the first time.
All eyes now will be on how Scottish Labour reacts to the UK party’s u-turn, with their MSPs being challenged to stand up against the decision and also vote in favour of the climate budget being presented at Holyrood.
Scottish Greens co-leader Lorna Slater said: “Labour have betrayed our climate, and they have betrayed Scottish voters. This investment was urgently needed to put us back on track to meeting our climate commitments and to renew our economy.
"This is a catastrophic mistake that will not be forgotten given the far reaching consequences it will have.
“At a stroke Keir Starmer has thrown future generations under a diesel engine bus, and shredded any commitment his party had towards building a greener economy and supporting a just transition.
“It is clear they cannot be trusted to take the tough decisions that are needed to ensure a liveable planet, when they are ditching all kinds of previous policies at a rate of knots.
“Today’s very grave report from scientists on global temperatures breaching 1.5C should also be screaming to politicians that more - not less - investment is needed.
“Only a week ago, Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar sat with the First Minister and other party leaders for a climate summit to hear what action is needed to tackle the climate crisis, hearing warnings from Chris Stark at the UKCCC that we aren’t moving fast enough.
“He also stood in the Scottish Parliament’s chamber with his fellow MSPs and debated with us over the need to accelerate Scotland’s just transition to build on the tens of thousands of renewable jobs being created,
“Sarwar and his fellow MSPs should show some courage and tell their bosses in London to reconsider and vote for the Scottish budget which is designed to fend off the worst off Tory damage to our society, including to our environment.
“The Scottish Greens are ensuring this Scottish Government is investing in climate and nature targets at record levels, but we need more action from Westminster to support that.
“The Tories won’t do it. Now it seems Labour aren’t prepared to do so either. Every vote for the Scottish Greens will help us to ensure the climate is at the top of the political agenda.”