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  • Rovindu Ambagolla

Triple Bottom Tuesdays >>> Scotland's Stance on New Oil and Gas Permits

Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has taken a stern stance after the alarming new report published by the United Nations about climate change. The First Minister has urged the UK government to reconsider their oil and gas licenses, writing to British Prime Minister “We are both well aware of the importance of oil and gas over many decades -- however the answer to these challenges-- given the urgency of the climate emergency-- cannot be business as usual”.

The letter sent to the British Prime Minister by Nicola Sturgeon is a result of growing pressure on her to take an initiative ahead of the climate change conference (COP 27) which will take place this year in late October.

Sturgeon has urged the UK government to reconsider new oil and gas fields that have been licensed, however not yet developed. A good example of such a project is the Cambo development, owned by Siccar Point Energy Ltd. and Royal Dutch Shell Plc, and is directly West of Scotland’s Shetland Island.

The Prime Minister's spokesman Max Blain informed reporters that the development decision regarding Cambo “was based on an existing license rather than granting a license now”. He further added that it was part of the energy mix for the short term whilst making the transition to more sustainable energy.

If the initial phase of the development were to be carried out as planned, almost 170 million barrels of oil can be extracted. Meanwhile, the green political party in Scotland known as the Scottish Greens have repeated their demands of revoking the Cambo project and forbidding any new oil or gas permits.

The UK has however started to develop their own ways to battle climate change, for example early this year they started a project which will turn the North Sea into a basin that produces renewable energy and captures carbon. The UK’s Energy Minister Anne-Marie Trevelyan has also highlighted the possibility of banning new oil and gas licenses in the near future.

Published 17th August | 11:20 AM

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