Following the passing of the Climate Change Bill in the Scottish Parliament today, the Just Transition Partnership, a coalition of trade unions and environmental organisations, commented:

Dave Moxham, Deputy General Secretary of the Scottish Trades Union Congress said:

“The climate emergency is the biggest threat facing society, therefore it is vital that we act to cut emissions, and fast. To ensure that we succeed in the task it is crucial that tackling the climate crisis is done in a way which protects and enhances the livelihoods of workers and communities.

“We welcome that the new climate change legislation enshrines Just Transition principles, and requires that future Climate Plans explain the impact of proposals and policies on employment in different sectors and regions and set out support for the workforce, communities and employers.

“We also welcome that Ministers are required to report on measures for support for workers and communities in annual progress reports to Parliament. Crucially, trade unions have been recognised as key stakeholders in the new principles set out in the Bill.

“Going forward the Scottish Government must recognise that the markets have failed to avert climate emergency. Ministers must be much more interventionist and willing to take on corporate interests if they are to deliver a truly just transition.”

Mary Church, Head of Campaigns at Friends of the Earth Scotland said:

“We are in the middle of a climate emergency and the public clamour for transformative action and just transition to a zero carbon economy is growing.

“It is disappointing that Parliament missed the opportunity to put the Just Transition Commission on a statutory basis in the new Climate Change law, and that Ministers are not required to identify the scale and sources of the investment that is urgently needed to deliver a Just Transition to a zero carbon economy.

“We urge Ministers to ensure that after the initial two-year remit of the Just Transition Commission there is long-term oversight and scrutiny of plans to tackle the climate emergency to ensure these are carried out in a way which is fair to workers and communities, and improves social inclusion.

“We also urge Ministers and MSPs to back putting a just transition to meet Scotland’s climate change targets in the founding legislation of the Scottish National Investment Bank when that Bill is debated tomorrow [Thursday].”

Notes to Editors

The Just Transition Partnership was formed by Friends of the Earth Scotland and the Scottish Trade Union Congress in 2016. Membership includes Unite Scotland, UNISON Scotland, UCU Scotland, CWU Scotland, PCS Scotland, and WWF Scotland. Read our Joint Statement on Just Transition https://foe.scot/resource/joint-statement-just-transition/

The Bill to create a Scottish National Investment Bank will be debated for the first time by MSPs in the Scottish Parliament on Thursday 26 September https://www.parliament.scot/parliamentarybusiness/Bills/111153.aspx