Energy Strategy: Scottish Government must ‘bite the bullet’ on oil & gas phase out
Climate campaigners are calling on the Scottish Government to bite the bullet and commit to a fully renewable energy system by 2030 as the public consultation on its Energy Strategy and Just Transition Plan closes on Tuesday 9th May.
Campaigners highlighted conflicting visions within the document and the over-reliance on carbon capture and hydrogen to meet the Government’s 2030 vision, despite previously admitting this would not be possible.
Campaigners said that with critical 2030 climate targets looming, it is essential that the final version of the energy plan sets out a comprehensive strategy for a managed and just phase out of oil and gas, moving to a fully renewable energy system that is run for the benefit of people and the planet.
Whilst campaigning to be First Minister Humza Yousaf pledged to take a 10% equity share in future offshore wind leasing round and set up a publicly owned energy generation company. Neither of these options to create an energy system that delivers greater benefits to the public are considered in this document.
Given the abject failure of market forces to respond to the climate crisis, Friends of the Earth Scotland believes that public ownership is key to driving the transformation of the energy system.
The draft version of the ESJTP was also criticised for compiling existing policies and strategies, failing to fill in the gaps or address lack of coherence between these.
Friends of the Earth Scotland’s head of campaigns Mary Church said:
“The final destination of this Strategy is bold but there is no coherent plan for how we will get there. If Scotland is to stop missing climate targets, it needs to get off fossil fuels and deliver the wide-ranging transformation needed in public transport, home insulation and renewable generation that can help slash climate pollution and tackle the cost of living crisis.
“There is no time to lose. The Scottish Government must bite the bullet and set a clear direction of travel and how we are going to get there. As part of that we need a clear end date for oil and gas within this decade and a detailed plan on how affected workers and communities will be supported through the transition.
“Ministers must stop clinging to the dangerous illusion that carbon capture can deliver the urgent step change needed in Scotland’s climate efforts, and focus on delivering a fully renewable energy system by 2030.
“Profit driven energy bosses have long failed to deliver an energy system that works for households or creates enough decent green jobs in Scotland. Humza Yousaf must build on his promise to take stakes in future offshore wind projects and make sure that a public energy company is set up swiftly to share the benefits of our energy resources more fairly and drive the just transition.”
The final version of the Energy Strategy should:
- Set a clear date and plan for the end of oil and gas use within this decade
- Reject new fossil fuel infrastructure and over-reliance on Carbon Capture
- Clarify that the 2030 decarbonisation target will be met fully through renewables
- Detailed green jobs creation plan and clear pathways for oil workers to switch sector
- Centre public ownership with public good objectives to drive the just transition
- Reduce overall energy demand through public transport and home insulation
- Ensure fair consumption of minerals critical to the energy transition
NOTES TO EDITORS
The public consultation on the ESJTP closes on Tuesday 9th May 2023.
Yousaf: Scotland should have equity stake in new ScotWind round 4/3/23
Scot Gov admits negative emissions technologies like CCS will not deliver in time for 2030 targets
Friends of the Earth Scotland is:
* Scotland’s leading environmental campaigning organisation
* An independent Scottish charity with a network of thousands of supporters and active local groups across Scotland
* Part of the largest grassroots environmental network in the world, uniting over 2 million supporters, 73 national member groups, and 5,000 local activist groups.