A fairer future for Scottish energy

Ewan Gibbs calls for investment to cushion the transition from an oil to a net-zero economy

The World Today Published 1 October 2021 3 minute READ

Ewan Gibbs

Lecturer of global inequalities, University of Glasgow and author of  ‘Coal Country: The Meaning and Memory of Deindustrialisation in Postwar Scotland’

Energy has been at the heart of Scotland’s economic and political development since the mid-20th century and, as a result, the nation’s commitment to move towards a net-zero carbon emissions economy in a fair and just manner is particularly relevant to its workers. 

Jim Skea, who heads the Just Transition Commission, has laid out a vision for ‘an orderly managed transition to net-zero that creates benefit and opportunity for people across Scotland’. 

This is particularly aimed at reassuring communities in Aberdeenshire and the Highlands who are experiencing the sharp end of the move away from oil and gas. Scotland’s experiences of the shift from coal left a powerful imprint of injustice in the nation’s psyche, but also lessons that can guide the current transition.

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