SNP conference: Kate Forbes pledges £3 billion green energy fund

Over £3 billion will be spend on the transition away from fossil fuels to the green economy in Scotland, Kate Forbes has pledged.

The Scottish Finance Secretary told the third day of the SNP Conference the money would be spent over the life of the current Parliament.

Forbes also called on the UK government to match the SNP Scottish Government’s £500 million fund for Moray and the North East to be delivered over the next 10 years.

Forbes said: “As we look ahead to the eyes of the world being on Glasgow in November for COP26, the Scottish Government’s commitment is clear. I can confirm that we will invest at least £3 billion over the life of this parliament to deliver a just transition, supporting a green revolution in transport, helping those in fuel poverty and laying the foundations for a fairer, greener Scotland.”

Earlier First Minister Nicola Sturgeon restated that the controversial Cambo oil field east of Shetland should not get the go ahead from the UK government without a “fundamental re-assessment” of the drilling licence in light of current environmental guidelines.

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Forbes promised that oil workers would not be left behind like the coal and steel sectors during the de-industrialisation of Scotland in the 1980s and 90s.

She told the online event: “Thirty years ago, at a previous industrial crossroads, the Government of the day abandoned workers and forgot about industry. You have our commitment, we will not allow history to repeat itself.”

“Instead, we have this week announced a skills guarantee for workers in our carbon intensive sectors and we will work with communities to invest £500 million over ten years in a Just Transition Fund for the North East and Moray.”

She added: ” I challenge the UK Government here and now to match our £500 million in Moray and the North East over the next 10 years.”

The conference also passed a resolution rejecting the UK government’s “regressive” Nationality and Borders Bill and backed motion on the Scottish Government’s Draft Referendum Bill.

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