There is simply no denying that the conclusions of the global stocktake report are deeply concerning and that all countries, including Scotland, must seek to do more. The report found that nothing less than radical decarbonisation and systemic transformation will do.
Scotland will, of course, play her part. Internationally, we will continue to urge greater ambition and action towards a just transition to net zero through our co-chairmanship of the Under2 Coalition. I will highlight the issue as a matter of urgency while at New York climate week, and we, of course, look forward to the 28th UN climate change conference of the parties—COP28. Clear decisions on fossil fuels, renewable energy and climate finance must be progressed with urgency.
At home, Scotland has made progress on our net zero journey, although we know that more has to be done. We will continue to work with communities, businesses and international partners towards a net zero future.
As the First Minister said, Scotland has a deserved international reputation as a leader on climate action, but our domestic record needs to match up to that reputation. With Scottish Green policies such as removing peak-time rail fares, which will be introduced a few weeks from now, we are taking action to reduce emissions.
The First Minister said that he is about to join other world leaders at climate week and then at COP. What new actions is he bringing to the table to demonstrate Scotland’s commitment to tackling this global emergency?
Ross Greer is absolutely right that it is incumbent on Governments right across the world to ensure that they bring urgency, pace and initiative to tackling the climate emergency. Scotland has already had a big impact on the global stage, particularly through our pioneering commitment to addressing loss and damage. I am determined to keep building on that.
On new initiatives, that is why my programme for government committed to serious climate action: cheaper public transport through free bus travel, trialling the scrapping of peak rail fares on ScotRail—as Ross Greer mentioned—investing almost £5 billion in the net zero energy economy, a new climate change adaptation programme, the heat in buildings bill and the natural environment bill. On top of that, there is much more that we will continue to build on as we develop our new climate plan.
I look forward to hosting all party leaders so that we can get some consensus on the urgency that is required to tackle the climate emergency.
The Scottish Government has consistently failed to live up to our climate targets, which is bad news for the 38 per cent of households living in fuel poverty whose energy bills have increased. What does the First Minister say to the millions of people across the world, and here in Edinburgh, who will be campaigning on the streets this weekend to demand a just transition, given that his Government has flip-flopped on oil and gas—[
Sarah Boyack would have more credibility on the issue if her party had not U-turned on its support for low-emission zones or, indeed, dumped its £28 billion green prosperity fund. That is the very point here. Time and again, the Scottish Government does not just talk the talk; it is prepared to walk the walk. We will take serious action to tackle the climate emergency, but it would really help if those parties that demand that we meet our targets do not then oppose every single measure that we bring to the chamber.
If Sarah Boyack and the Labour Party are serious about tackling the climate emergency, they should join us, support us and bring forward ideas that will help us to collectively tackle it. Do not simply dump the policies that you had and oppose the policies that we bring forward; support us, because collective action is needed to tackle the climate emergency.