2024 New Year’s climate resolutions for Scottish party leaders
In 2021 over 100,000 people gathered at COP26 in Glasgow to demand world leaders take action on the climate and nature emergencies.
Despite increasingly devastating climate impacts there’s been a lack of robust and urgent action to reduce emissions, protect nature, or make the biggest polluters pay for their damage.
With the UK Government rolling back on climate and nature policies, and the Scottish Government delaying its new climate plan, it’s vital that we come together to show political leaders that people in Scotland care and want to see urgent action.
We gathered messages throughout December, and at the COP28 Global Day of Action for Climate Justice, which we took to Scottish Party leaders in January 2024.
Our new years climate resolutions for party leaders:
Turn rhetoric into action by urgently delivering a bold, ambitious climate plan that meets or exceeds Scotland’s legal climate targets.
The vast majority of people in Scotland are concerned about the climate crisis and our climate targets were passed with cross party support. To ensure we meet and exceed future targets, the new Climate Change Plan due in 2024 must contain transformational new policies across all sectors, such as reforming the funding system for agriculture, accelerating nature restoration, making our homes warmer, and enabling more sustainable transport options. These actions would also address linked inequality, health, and nature crises and provide secure new jobs: a just transition for all of us.
In this decisive decade, set a strong example and inspire others through world-leading Scottish nature and climate policies.
As a country whose development has historically benefitted from burning fossil fuels for energy, we now have the responsibility and the opportunity to lead by example. Scotland’s climate leadership is needed, necessary and is the right thing to do. We can inspire others to act by showing how to fairly transition away from fossil fuels to a low carbon, more just society, and supporting communities around the world who are dealing with the worst impacts of a climate crisis they did not cause. This includes supporting ambitious global agreements, such as endorsing the Fossil Fuel Non-Proliferation Treaty, a global exit plan to phase out fossil fuels.
Fund climate action fairly by making people and corporations who are causing the crisis pay the most.
Globally and in Scotland, the climate crisis is being driven by the actions of the richest and biggest polluters – In 2022, the five biggest oil and gas companies made record profits of over £150 billion, yet they continue to be highly subsidised by the UK and other governments. In Scotland, analysis suggests that people in the richest 5% of households are responsible for more than four times the emissions from the things they consume than those in households with the lowest 5% of incomes. Richer people are driving the planet to the point of destruction, so to sustain and deepen public support for climate action it must be funded fairly, by making polluters pay. Supporting fundamental reform of the devolved tax system would deliver increased climate and social investment.