Sturgeon says Cambo oil field should not be given the green light

The First Minister said that this decade will be 'the most important in human history'.

Sturgeon says Cambo oil field should not be given the green light Scottish Parliament TV
The First Minister gave a statement on COP26 at the Scottish Parliament on Tuesday.

Nicola Sturgeon has said she does not believe that the proposed Cambo oil field should be given the green light.

The First Minister made the remarks in response to a question from Scottish Labour MSP Monica Lennon.

The issue was raised as Sturgeon made a statement on COP26 at Holyrood on Tuesday.

She said: “I’ve made my position very clear, I don’t think we can go on extracting new oil and gas forever.

“That’s why we’ve moved away from the policy of maximum economic recovery.

“And I don’t think we can continue to give the go ahead to new oil fields, so I don’t think that Cambo should get the green light.

“I am not the one taking that decision so I’ve set out a proposal for a climate assessment and I think the presumption would be that Cambo couldn’t and shouldn’t pass any rigorous climate assessment.”

Activists had urged Sturgeon to oppose the proposed development.

The Scottish Conservatives’ net zero, energy and transport spokesman Liam Kerr, accused the SNP of having ‘deserted the industry’ over the refusal to back the Cambo development.

He said: “Nicola Sturgeon has come off the fence and fully abandoned Scotland’s oil and gas industry. 

“In a desperate bid to please her Green coalition partners, egged on by Labour, Nicola Sturgeon confirmed that she is against the Cambo field and the thousands of Scottish jobs it would protect.

“By refusing to back the Cambo development, the SNP have deserted the industry they once cited as the cornerstone of their economic case for independence.

“Only the Scottish Conservatives are resolute in standing up for the livelihoods of oil and gas workers in Scotland as we transition to net zero.”

The comments on Cambo by the First Minister were welcomed by the Scottish Greens.

The party’s climate spokesperson Mark Ruskell said: “I welcome this clarity from the First Minister.

“She is absolutely right that expanding oil and gas is folly during the pressing climate crisis.

“That’s why with Greens in government Scotland is investing in the alternatives, expanding renewable energy and decarbonising homes and transport, creating new jobs along the way.

“It is also welcome that the First Minister recognises the leadership shown by the Beyond Oil and Gas Alliance. Scotland, too, can lead by example.”

“As I reflect on the past two weeks, I feel pride in the leadership that Scotland has shown and been recognised for.”

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon

During her statement on COP26, Sturgeon said she feels a “renewed sense of responsibility” to go “further and faster” on tackling climate change.

She told MSPs: “As I reflect on the past two weeks, I feel pride in the leadership that Scotland has shown and been recognised for.

“However, I also feel a renewed sense of responsibility to go further and faster, to face up to tough challenges as well as the relatively easy options, and to help raise the bar of world leadership more generally.

“And so our focus in the months and years ahead will be firmly on delivery.”

Douglas Ross said the pact 'keeps the 1.5 degree goal within our grasp'. (Scottish Parliament TV)Scottish Parliament TV
Douglas Ross said the pact ‘keeps the 1.5 degree goal within our grasp’. (Scottish Parliament TV)

Sturgeon warned that the “stakes could not be higher” as she said that the key test will be whether the Glasgow Climate Pact is implemented fully and with urgency.

“This decade will be the most important in human history,” the First Minister said.

“The actions we take between now and 2030 will determine whether or not we bequeath a sustainable and habitable planet to those who come after us.

“The stakes could not be higher and so I understand why many are angry and frustrated that more progress was not made in Glasgow.

“However the Glasgow Climate Pact does provide a basis for further action. The key test will be whether it is implemented fully and with urgency.

“That is what all of us must focus our efforts on between now and COP27. Scotland will continue to play our full part.”

Sturgeon concluded: “While we can be proud of the part we played at COP26, our responsibility now is to ensure that future generations will look back and be proud of the actions we take in the months and years ahead.”

Anas Sarwar said that the pact does not go far enough. (Scottish Parliament TV)Scottish Parliament TV
Anas Sarwar said that the pact does not go far enough. (Scottish Parliament TV)

Scottish Conservative Leader Douglas Ross urged the First Minister to deliver a “lasting legacy” from COP26 by meeting her own climate change targets.

“The Glasgow Pact was a momentous achievement which keeps the 1.5 degree goal within our grasp,” he said.

“What was agreed in Glasgow can deliver a platform to protect the future for our children and generations to come. This COP could be remembered as the end of coal and deforestation and a historic deal to cut methane emissions.

“We cannot underplay the enormity of reaching a consensus between 197 countries that will pave the way to net zero.”

Ross added: “Setting ambitious targets is great – but what the planet needs is action. Nicola Sturgeon needs to deliver a lasting legacy from COP26 by finally meeting her own climate change targets.”

Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar warned that the “rhetoric does not meet the reality”.

He told the Scottish Parliament: “The reality is we have had two weeks of words, we now need action.

“I welcome the Glasgow Climate Pact, but we must recognise it does not go far enough and it doesn’t go fast enough.

“And we all have a duty to hold all our governments to account, including our own governments here in Scotland and across the UK.

“Because the rhetoric does not meet the reality. The reality is that we do not have enough of a pledge to keep to 1.5 degrees in the current Glasgow Climate Pact.”

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