Macdonald : Time for SNP to Come Clean Over Fracking
It’s time for the SNP to come clean on fracking, Scottish Labour said today.
Today the Herald reports comments from Ineos Chief Executive Jim Ratcliffe that the SNP Government is not opposed to fracking, and believes the shale gas industry could be up and running on a commercial scale by 2018.
Friends of the Earth Scotland have called for the minutes of a meeting between Mr Ratcliffe and the First Minister to be published.
Scottish Labour previously accused the SNP of sending mixed messages on fracking. Fergus Ewing announced a moratorium on fracking at the start of the year, but John Swinney said in June he wanted the Scottish Government to get the revenue from onshore fracking.
Scottish Labour would introduce a triple-lock system to halt any onshore fracking taking place in Scotland until environmental and health safeguards are in place, including a local referendum before final planning approval is given.
Scottish Labour’s Shadow Energy Minister Lewis Macdonald said:
“The SNP Government need to come clean on fracking, they can’t continue to face both ways on an issue of real concern to thousands of Scots.
“The SNP made a big play of their opposition to fracking during the general election, they announced a moratorium but the consultation appears to have been kicked into the long grass. If it turns out their stance was simply a cheap electoral ploy it will be seen as a cynical betrayal by thousands of people who voted for them in May.
“Scottish Labour has set out a triple lock system that will stop fracking in Scotland now. Under Scottish Labour’s plan no fracking will take place in Scotland without the local community affected giving its approval in a referendum. We will give Scots a local veto over fracking. It is clear that the SNP will not.
“Scottish Labour is backing the calls of Friends of the Earth Scotland today for Nicola Sturgeon to publish the minutes of her meeting with Ineos. It is time for the SNP Government to be honest with the people of Scotland about fracking.”