Wed 26 Oct, 2022

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak must put the climate front and centre of his new government by banning new oil and gas developments in the North Sea, say the Scottish Greens.

Replying to a question from Green MP Caroline Lucas at PMQs today he pledged to reverse Tory policy over fracking which had been given the green light under predecessor Liz Truss, but only against the backdrop of angry party members.

Now Scottish Greens Co-Leader Lorna Slater MSP has challenged him to not only to appease those who have helped him into office, but to show genuine climate leadership. She said:

“Rishi Sunak can be remembered as the Prime Minister who scrapped oil and gas exploration in the UK, or just another climate denying Tory politician who put profit before people and the planet.

“He now has the power to do the right thing. He can put an end to future exploration and drilling in the North Sea and impose a meaningful windfall tax on those already making massive profits, unlike his previous iteration which actually encouraged more drilling. By doing this he can help to accelerate a Just Transition.”

She said he also has a moral imperative to act to save people from soaring energy prices.

“Millions of people are stuck in an energy crisis, bills are soaring and he could put a stop to this agony now by making the energy companies pay.

“We have the skills and technology to lead on renewable energy, yet ordinary homes and businesses are the ones being left to pick up the bill for an economic failure of which he was one of the main architects.

“He has a moral imperative to do the right thing. His first 100 days of government - which will take in Cop 27 - must focus not on Tory infighting, but on the good of all.”

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