This Bill is a chance to address the reality we face as a society, and speed up progress towards an economy that is not exposed to unburnable fossil fuels.Mark Ruskell MSP
Mark Ruskell MSP, Climate Change spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, responded to today's (30 June) launch of a government consultation on a new Climate Change Bill by calling for cross-party agreement to set a target for leaving oil and gas in the ground.
In the consultation, Scottish Ministers propose increasing Scotland's 2050 target of reducing climate change emissions by 90 per cent compared to 1990 levels, stretching the current target of 80 per cent.
Greens say that the international consensus on climate change is that the vast majority of fossil fuel reserves such as oil and gas must be left in the ground to keep the global temperature rise to under 2 degrees Celsius.
Sweden has already said it aims to be an entirely fossil-fuel-free state, a point Mark Ruskell put to the Climate Change Secretary during this week's Environment Committee at Holyrood.
Mark Ruskell MSP said:
"This Bill is an opportunity for all parties in Holyrood to agree to tougher targets that align with the international consensus. Climate emissions must be seriously reduced to limit the damage that rising global temperatures and rising sea levels will cause to our economy, and that has to mean leaving oil and gas in the ground.
"The Scottish Government is weak on policy when it comes to reducing emissions from big emitters such as transport and land use, and they continue to sit on the fence on fracking and encourage North Sea oil and gas exploration. This Bill is a chance to address the reality we face as a society, and speed up progress towards an economy that is not exposed to unburnable fossil fuels.
"Greens have already shown that more jobs can be created in low-carbon industries than we currently have in oil and gas. The sooner we act the brighter our future."
Climate Change Bill - Consultation Paper:
Sweden aims to be an entirely fossil-fuel-free state:
Jobs in Scotland’s New Economy, a report commissioned by the Scottish Green MSPs: