Tory coal decision has taken bulldozer to climate commitments

The UK government’s decision to approve planning permission for a coal mine in Cumbria is reckless and will have a devastating impact for years to come, according to the Scottish Greens.

In October, in her capacity as Minister for Biodiversity, the Scottish Greens Co-leader, Lorna Slater MSP, announced that the Scottish Government was opposed to any new coal extraction.

The Scottish Greens environment spokesperson, Mark Ruskell MSP, said:

“This Tory government has just bulldozed a Westminster sized hole into the UK’s net zero commitments.

“There is no sense in this reckless climate vandalism. It will have a devastating impact for years to come. The science doesn’t lie, to escape global catastrophe we have to stop drilling for coal, for oil and for gas. 

“This announcement is the exact opposite of everything that we should be doing. What we need is a just and urgent transition from fossil fuels to renewables. 

“Time and again the Tories have shown that they cannot be trusted with our environment. Despite the climate emergency, they have doubled down on the failed policies of the past.

“It also raises serious constitutional questions - the Scottish Government is protecting all our citizens and our environment by refusing to approve planning permission for any future coal mining operations, while this set to go ahead a few miles away.

“But the climate crisis doesn’t respect borders. If our house is on fire, your house is on fire. If our air is polluted, your air is polluted. By pushing ahead the UK Government risks not just the health of those in England, but people all across the UK."