Thanks so much to everyone who joined us in Edinburgh to demand an end to fossil fuels!

The big march through the city made it clear that there is huge demand for a fair and fast transition that protects workers, communities and the climate.

Credit: Neil Hanna

Our message to politicians

Marchers in Edinburgh are calling for a properly planned transition away from oil and gas which is led by the workers and communities most affected. A credible plan to switch to renewables can deliver huge benefits to people such as more affordable energy, secure green jobs, warm homes and a safe climate.

Credit: Neil Hanna
Credit: Neil Hanna
Credit: Neil Hanna

Our oil and gas campaigner Freya Aitchison said: “The near daily climate disasters we are witnessing from Libya, to Greece to China are driven by the burning of fossil fuels yet politicians are still cheerleading for fossil fuel companies.

“Rishi Sunak’s plan to ‘max out’ oil and gas will maximise climate destruction while the Scottish Government is considering approving a new gas plant at Peterhead in Aberdeenshire which will lock us into burning fossil fuels for decades to come.”

Stop Peterhead banner Credit: Richard Dixon

Our route passed the UK Government building to ensure that they heard loud and clear that we must Stop Rosebank and halt any plans for new oil and gas in the North Sea. People left personal messages on post-it notes calling for an end to climate-damaging projects.

Leaving messages on UK Government building. Credit Richard Dixon

Broad movement pushing for action

The rally at the end of the march outside the Scottish Parliament heard from trade unionists, anti-poverty groups and inspiring climate activists. This showed the breadth of the movement against fossil fuels and the audience were told that the move away from oil and gas can create a fairer, greener Scotland.

Lucia Harrington, Lead Organiser of Fuel Poverty Action which campaigns for insulated homes and clean, affordable energy for all said:

“Our households’ resources, and the earth’s resources, are being exploited by the profiteering fossil fuel industry, and this is driving fuel poverty and climate disaster. One of the leading causes of the cost of living crisis was that fossil fuel powered energy companies were allowed to make record profits at the expense of millions of people who are forced to go without heating, hot water and electricity.

“We need a just transition now to an energy system that works for people and the planet. Many workers in the fossil fuel industry want to be part of this transition without losing their jobs and falling into fuel poverty.”

Marchers listen to speeches outside the Scottish Parliament. Credit: Neil Hanna

Steve Gray, a delegate of Aberdeen Trades Union Council who spoke at the rally after the march said:

“Aberdeen Trades Union Council welcomes the opportunity to march in solidarity with the climate justice movement and thanks everyone for their support for a just transition for workers employed by the fossil fuel industries.

“The tragic deaths caused by the Stonehaven trail derailment during a storm showed the devastating impacts of a changing climate. Aberdeen Trades Union Council, alongside our STUC allies, recognises that we cannot allow these hazards to multiply and threaten our communities.”

Huge praise to the march organisers

Huge praise must go to the small group of amazing volunteers who made this march happen. They pushed it out on social media, distributed flyers and worked to make sure it was properly stewarded and organised.

If you’re interested in getting more involved in campaigning with people in your area, then please get in touch at activism@foe.scot

As the STUC representative reminded us: “All our gains from free school education to votes for working people and equal pay for women have been won through collective struggles. We can once again win this shared fight and secure decent jobs for people building climate resilient communities in Scotland and around the world.”

Together we can defeat the fossil fuel industry and win a liveable future.