Bringing You the Daily Dispatch

Scottish Greens to vote on power-sharing deal with SNP after carbon goal ditched
Climate World News

Scottish Greens to vote on power-sharing deal with SNP after carbon goal ditched

Scottish Greens are to hold a vote to determine the future of the party’s power-sharing agreement with the Scottish National party, after the government abandoned its pledge to cut carbon emissions 75% by 2030.

Members will be able to vote on whether their party should continue to cooperate with the SNP after the announcement on Thursday that the Scottish government was scrapping its key climate pledge.

The Scottish Greens co-leader Patrick Harvie said that when the vote, which will be held at an upcoming extraordinary general meeting (EGM), takes place, he would be urging members to support the power-sharing deal, so the party could “put Green values into practice” in government. The date of the vote has not yet been announced.

There was fury among climate campaigners after Màiri McAllan, the Scottish net zero secretary, confirmed the government had ditched its emissions target and would also drop legally binding annual targets on reducing carbon emissions after criticism from a UK advisory committee. The UK Climate Change Committee said last month the 2030 target was no longer credible because of inadequate action in areas including home heating, transport and farming.

McAllan said Scotland would instead follow the UK and Welsh governments in setting five-yearly “carbon budgets” in an effort to meet its zero emissions target date of 2045.

Prof Piers Forster, the CCC’s interim chair, said when the news broke that dropping the 2030 target was “deeply disappointing”. “Interim targets and plans to deliver against them are what makes any net zero commitment credible,” he said. “They are essential for enabling a stable transition. Long-term planning is vital for businesses, citizens and future parliaments. Today that has been undermined.”

Harvie wrote on X that many Green members had been demanding an EGM to discuss the future of the Bute House agreement, the party’s power-sharing deal with the SNP. Harvie underlined the agreement’s impact: “As part of the Scottish government, we’re making a difference on a far bigger scale than ever before.”

The August 2021 power-sharing deal, which was voted in by members of both parties, was historic, heralding the first time Greens had entered government anywhere in the UK, with Harvie and his fellow co-leader Lorna Slater taking ministerial posts.

As the Greens confirmed a new vote would be held, Slater said: “The intention, as a democratic party, is to give members the opportunity to debate and decide how the party moves forward.” She said the EGM would give members the opportunity to discuss “how we continue to build on the progress we have made on our manifesto commitments and to deliver our vision of a fairer, greener Scotland”.

Citing progress made on “making big polluters pay” and social policy, Slater said the party was “rich in talent and determined voices … which is why the Tories, Labour, big polluters, greedy corporate interests and rightwing media commentators are so determined to try and have us fail”.

“Not everything in politics is easy, as we have seen over recent years, months and days,” she said. “But our strength as a green movement is in standing up against those destructive forces who would set fire to everything we have achieved if given half the chance.”

Source: theguardian.com