Scottish Lib Dems make U-turn on fracking

The Scottish Liberal Democrats have made a U-turn on fracking with an announcement to campaign for a ban on the controversial technique to extract shale gas. It comes after members […]

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By Priyanka Shrestha

The Scottish Liberal Democrats have made a U-turn on fracking with an announcement to campaign for a ban on the controversial technique to extract shale gas.

It comes after members voted to lift the current moratorium on fracking at the party’s conference last weekend while supporting a move away from polluting fossil fuels.

However it now plans to include a commitment to oppose fracking in its manifesto for the Scottish Parliament elections as part of a programme to tackle climate change.

Scotland’s voters will choose who their next MSPs will be on 5th May.

The U-turn was confirmed after the Lib Dem’s policy committee met last week.

Scottish Lib Dem Leader Willie Rennie MSP said: “As part of our pre-manifesto, members voted to support clean, renewable energy to protect our planet. Fracking isn’t either of those things. Allowing it in this country would harm our pursuit of a greener Scotland.

“Scotland has missed its climate change targets for the last four years. We need an energy mix that will help us cut down on emissions, not boost them. Fossil fuels will remain part of the picture for years to come but our focus must be on supporting renewables rather than increasing carbon emissions. We don’t want to distract from this by opening up a whole new front of carbon-based fuels and energy production.”

Last month the UK Government’s survey found there is more opposition than support for fracking, especially among those who know about the controversial process.