Climate protests expected across Scotland in 'day of action'

Rallies are taking place in Glasgow and Edinburgh, alongside action in Argyll, Melrose and Galashiels.

Friends of the Earth Scotland: Climate protests planned in Glasgow and Edinburgh on ‘day of action’ STV News

Climate protests are expected to take place across Scotland on Friday as part of a nationwide “day of action”.

More than 30 environmental groups across the UK are expected to join ‘Divest from Crisis’, urging action to address fuel poverty, climate change and energy security.

Rallies are taking place in Glasgow and Edinburgh city centres, alongside demonstrations in Argyll, Melrose and Galashiels.

Ahead of the protests, campaign group Friends of the Earth said 50 councils across the UK now formally supported divestment from fossil fuel motions.

Sally Clark, divestment campaigner at Friends of the Earth Scotland, said: “In the last year, many of us have been unable to afford to heat our homes and watched in horror as the climate crisis intensified, with floods tearing through Pakistan, drought devastating the Horn of Africa and storms surging through the US, Japan and Mauritius.

“The spiralling cost of living and the breakdown of the global climate are both symptoms of an unstable and unjust energy system, founded on fossil fuels.

“This is a fossil fuel crisis, and it will only intensify if we don’t divest from fossil fuels and invest for a liveable future.

“Investors like local council pension funds are gambling billions on fossil fuels, propping up a broken energy system when they could be investing in warmer homes, renewable energy, and helping drive the transition to a liveable and just future.

“The scores of protests taking place across the UK today shows how much support there is for action for a fossil free future.”

Protest.
Protests will be held across the UK

Campaign groups are calling on investors to divest from fossil fuels and boost investment in renewables.

In Edinburgh a theatrical protest is due to take place outside City Chambers at noon, while as well as a demonstration in Glasgow city centre, a musical-themed rally is planned for the city on Saturday.

Vigils, stalls and online actions are planned elsewhere in Scotland, including in Melrose, led by the youth network Fridays for Future.

Events are also taking place in London, Manchester, Gwynedd, Nottinghamshire, Tyne and Wear, Greater Leicestershire, Warwickshire, East Yorkshire and West Yorkshire.

Stephen Smellie, depute convenor of Unison Scotland, the union which represents local government workers, said: “Unison members care about how their pension pots are invested.

“Firstly, we want to ensure that our pensions are safe for the future. Fossil fuels are not a safe investment for the future. Secondly, we care about the future of the environment and fossil fuels are responsible for destroying it.

“We have demonstrated that, as the members of pension funds, we want to be consulted on how our money is invested and we would call on pension funds to do that.”

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