Scotland Can Ban Fracking Once And For All

Faodaidh Alba casg a chur air fracadh

We need a planned and managed transition away from fossil fuels to sustainable energy under democratic control which provides energy security, job security and faces up to the realities of climate change. The Scottish Greens know that Scotland can meet its needs through a diverse range of sustainable energy sources. We believe that we need to generate 50% of all our energy use from renewables by 2030. Scotland has some of the greatest renewable energy resources in the world, with enough wind, tide and wave potential to make us a world class leader in 21st century energy generation. Our MSPs will continue to apply pressure to see a permanent ban on fracking and other forms of unconventional fossil fuel extraction.

An energy-secure Scotland can prioritise energy generation within and for our communities. We do not need to rely on traditional, dirty fuel sources; nor must we turn to unsafe, high-risk methods of fracking and unconventional gas extraction to satisfy our energy demand. The Scottish Greens believe that by harnessing the existing transferrable skills of those currently employed in fossil fuel industries, we can generate a sustainable energy revolution. By taking the lead here, we protect the skills and strengths of our workforce and businesses, and can begin to build a new energy export sector.

  • Ban Fracking Once And For All

    Our MSPs will continue to take action to secure a permanent ban on fracking and unconventional fossil fuel extraction.
  • Affordable Warmth

    We believe that nobody should be in fuel poverty. In addition to our not-for-profit repair service, we will promote the wider uptake of combined heat and power (CHP) systems and call for all new buildings to meet high efficiency standards.
  • Control Energy Locally

    We support the establishment of socially-owned renewable energy companies.
The Scottish Greens believe that by harnessing the existing transferrable skills of those currently employed in fossil fuel industries, we can can generate a sustainable energy revolution. By taking the lead here, we protect the skills and strengths of our workforce and businesses, and can begin to build a new energy export sector.

Mark Ruskell MSP

Mid Scotland and Fife
Climate, Energy, Environment, Food & Farming

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Scotland can transition to fossil-free energy sources:

  • More green jobs. There is an abundance of highly talented people working in the Scottish energy sector. The Scottish Greens want to see these skills flourish in a sustainable energy sector which contributes to a low carbon future. We will support a managed transition plan which will deliver over 200,000 jobs in renewable energy and associated industries. We will call for increased funding for Modern Apprenticeships and Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics to enable more young people, particularly young women, to move into renewable energy generation, supply and support.
  • Harness green technologies. Government support is needed to fully develop the technology for this energy transition. We will champion increased research and development for strategically critical sectors, such as liquid air energy storage and tidal stream, to enable a smooth transition to a renewable energy future. Increased investment should also be directed to domestic energy storage systems allowing those who generate renewable energy for their own home, such as through rooftop solar panels, to balance variable generation levels with household demand.
  • A Greener Grangemouth. The Grangemouth refinery will remain a key asset during the transition away from fossil fuels. We will call for increased investment in the research, development and demonstration of alternative bio-based feedstocks at Grangemouth to reduce dependency on petrochemicals. We will keep options open to support a public-worker ownership model.
  • A Scottish Renewable Energy Bond. Green MSPs will support the introduction of a bond to create capital to finance further development and expansion of renewable energy projects in Scotland. This will allow savers and investors across the country to support the rollout of clean, sustainable energy and to generate a return on their investment as the industry grows.
  • Resist subsidy cuts. The UK government has made significant cuts to subsidies for solar energy and reduced the feed-in-tariff rates across all renewable sources. Green MSPs will stand strong against further cuts to the UK Government’s renewable energy subsidies.

Scotland can support community energy generation:

  • Control energy locally. Our energy doesn’t need to be delivered by big corporations for increasingly high prices. We will argue for the establishment of socially-owned companies to drive investment in energy efficiency and low-carbon energy, such as combined heat and power (CHP) and micro-renewable systems. Local authorities will be supported to create municipal utility companies under public control, which deliver clean energy, cheaper heating and the opportunity for profits to be ploughed back into public services.
  • More community renewable energy generation. By devolving energy generation we can have more resilient communities delivering energy for a fair price while mitigating the effects of climate change. We will look to extend the Scottish Government target for renewable energy capacity to 1GW provided by community renewables and 1GW from locally owned projects by 2030 – that’s quadrupling our supply in 15 years.
  • Help for communities. Scottish Greens support measures to make available greater levels of grants, loans and financial advice for communities setting up new renewable energy schemes and to assist them to connect to the national grid.
  • Community buy-outs. We support the case for community buy-outs of renewable energy schemes on Scotland's largest estates, and recognise this may need further legislation beyond the current Land Reform proposals.

Scotland can make energy efficiency a priority:

  • New build and retrofitting standards. As the energy efficiency of buildings and homes improves the demand for energy will decrease – both from traditional fossil fuel sources and renewables. This will contribute to Scotland achieving its emissions targets. Green MSPs will call for high efficiency standards to deliver net zero carbon new buildings by 2030, and will push for the rate of retrofitting to be accelerated to ensure that all existing properties also achieve Band C by 2025.    
  • Support for combined heat and power (CHP) systems. To meet our target of 50% of all our energy use from renewables by 2030, we must move to generating more renewable heat. We believe that increased opportunities for CHP systems, including district heating, should be prioritised, particularly in new housing developments and  new public buildings.
  • Taking a whole-house approach. The smart meter rollout provides an opportunity  to deliver a whole-house approach to energy efficiency and usage, bringing together insulation schemes with fuel poverty programmes and area-based energy advice schemes to help keep homes warm into the future. The Scottish Greens will call for such co-ordinating action to be taken where possible.

Scotland can oppose fracking and unconventional coal and gas:

Scotland has mined coal for centuries and more recently drilled for oil to power our society and provide livelihoods. We now know that our dependency on fossil fuels has to end, leaving reserves in the ground, if we are to limit the effects of climate change.

We’re fighting a new fossil fuels front. New technologies have emerged in recent years allowing for the extraction of hard-to-reach fossil fuel reserves through processes of fracking and underground coal gasification. These technologies carry significant risks: environmental pollution, health problems for communities close to extraction sites and no guarantee of lower fuel prices. Licences to drill for unconventional fuels have been issued for sites around the Forth and central Scotland, threatening communities in the area.

The Scottish Greens have been successful in opposing fracking and unconventional fuel, protecting Scottish communities and environments. We have:

  • Won a moratorium on fracking and unconventional coal gas extraction. We worked hard along with community campaign groups to persuade Holyrood to halt developments until they can be proved to be safe for people and environment.
  • Led the first Holyrood debate on unconventional gas. Alison Johnstone MSP called for a vote to ban unconventional fossil fuel extraction in Scotland.
  • Supported community campaigns in areas at risk from proposed developments.

We will continue to oppose Scotland increasing its dependency on unsustainable fossil fuels and instead argue for resources to be channelled towards creating a range of thriving and efficient renewable energy sources.

Read: How Scotland Can Ban Fracking

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