Nicola Sturgeon 'regurgitated SNP pledges' says Wells
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The Alba Party chief warned his successor as First Minister against any “betrayal” of Scotland’s North Sea oil workers. Ms Sturgeon has agreed a cooperation agreement with the Green Party to form a government.
This gives her an absolute Holyrood majority, in return for the Greens getting two ministerial posts.
The agreement will come into effect if approved by Green Party members on Saturday.
However Mr Salmond, First Minister from 2007 to 2014, warned the SNP against abandoning the North Sea oil industry.
The Greens are bitterly opposed to any new drilling, despite oil playing a key part in the SNP’s 2014 independence bid.
Mr Salmond admitted climate change is the “greatest issue the world must confront”.
However he added: “The future of North Sea, the communities it benefits, the jobs it supports, and the economic advantage to Scotland merits much more serious consideration than what currently looks like student politics masquerading as coalition building.
“It is perfectly possible to reconcile hydrocarbon development with a zero carbon future, just as it’s possible to decarbonise transport without stopping essential road building.
“If I had placed Government in the hands of the Green Party, there would currently be no Forth Crossing and no Aberdeen Western Peripheral Road.
“Abandoning the North Sea would be a betrayal of the workforce and used by opponents to damage the independence case which for many decades has focussed on developing our country’s huge natural resources.”
Ms Sturgeon has urged the British Government to “reassess” licences granted for oil fields that have not yet been exploited.
However, she refused to explicitly call for the Cambo field near the Shetland Islands to be scrapped, as the Greens are demanding.
The SNP fell one seat short of a Holyrood majority at May’s Scottish parliament elections.
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Mr Salmond’s Alba Party failed to secure any seats.
Coalition with the pro-independence Greens will strengthen their case for a second referendum on leaving the UK.
However, it also raises complications, as oil played a key part in the SNP’s economic case for independence in 2014.
Speaking to the Daily Record, a spokesperson for the Scottish Greens hit back at Mr Salmond.
They said: “It’s just three months since Alex Salmond and his band of political misfits were sent packing at the ballot box by the people of Scotland.
“As a result of our record election result, Scottish Green Party members will have the opportunity to build a brighter future for Scotland by voting for a transformational co-operation agreement this weekend.”
An SNP representative commented: “The SNP is fully committed to a just transition to net-zero so that no industry or community is left behind and our proposed relationship with the Green Party does not change that.”
Britain is hosting the UN COP26 climate conference last this year, in Glasgow.
The Scottish Conservatives have accused Ms Sturgeon of forming a “coalition of chaos”.
They tweeted: “The SNP-Green coalition of chaos isn’t focussed on Covid recovery, improving education standards, the drugs deaths crisis or even climate change.
“All they care about is trying to divide Scotland by pushing for another referendum.”
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