Comment from Jamie Halcro Johnston on vote on future of North Sea oil and gas following the Scottish Conservative press statement
Highlands and Islands MSP Jamie Halcro Johnston said: “The oil and gas sector supports jobs and livelihoods across the Highlands and Islands, with Sullom Voe a major example of that.
“That’s why the importance of the sector can’t be overstated, and why the Scottish Conservatives are using our debate time in Holyrood to focus on an industry which remains so important for Shetland’s economy."
“While the SNP are prepared to cut the sector off at its knees just to appease their new Green allies, we have heard precious little from the nationalists about how their anti-business approach will impact oil and gas workers and businesses here in Shetland. I certainly hope that, given how uncharacteristically silent their regional MSPs have been on the subject, this will be the opportunity for them to speak up in support of oil and gas jobs."
“They can begin by telling us how they propose to replace the well-paid jobs that will be lost if we undertake the radical shift away from oil production that parts of the SNP/Green “coalition of chaos” want. And also how they would compensate Shetland for the enormous loss that would be incurred by not developing the Cambo field?"
“There was a time when the SNP trumpeted that oil and gas would underpin Scotland’s future. Now, pressured by the Greens, they seem all too willing to consign the industry to the past with no regard at all for the damage it would do to our economy here in Shetland”.
On Wednesday in the Scottish Parliament, the Scottish Conservatives will bring forward a vote on future oil and gas projects, including the Cambo field.
The party will use opposition time – called ‘party business’ – to hold a debate and vote on the future of the North Sea sector and the 100,000 jobs that the oil and gas industry supports.
Liam Kerr MSP said the vote will put the SNP under pressure to pick a side between the North East economy and the extremist Greens.
The Scottish Conservative motion for the vote will call for the Scottish Parliament to back future oil and gas projects, both to protect Scottish jobs and to cut down on emissions by limiting the need to import energy.
North East MSP and Scottish Conservative Shadow Cabinet Secretary for Net Zero, Energy and Transport, Liam Kerr, said: “We are bringing forward a vote on future North Sea projects, including the Cambo field, so that the Scottish Parliament can have its say on the importance of Scotland’s oil and gas industry during our transition to net zero. Nicola Sturgeon has already said future projects should be ‘reassessed’ and Patrick Harvie has boasted of shifting the SNP’s position on oil. The North East deserves to know if the Scottish Government still supports this vital industry and the 100,000 jobs it supports."
“The SNP have a choice: side with the North East economy or the extremist Greens. They can either back a sensible transition to net zero that limits the need to import costly energy from abroad. Or they can be upfront that they favour a radical shift to end Scotland’s oil and gas industry quickly, which would likely harm our environment. As the SNP used to shout - it’s Scotland’s oil. We are far better off using our own energy than paying higher prices to import from abroad, where the environmental protections are lower and the carbon cost is higher.”
The Scottish Conservatives motion will be: “That the Parliament supports new oil and gas projects, including Cambo, because a strong North Sea sector supporting tens of thousands of Scottish jobs is preferable to increasing energy imports during the transition to net zero.”