IT’S not difficult for the Tories to look out of touch, but their incessant badgering of the Scottish Greens over oil and gas is a prime example of exactly how oblivious they are.

Tory MSP Liam Kerr popped up a few times during yesterday’s Holyrood debate on the climate emergency, and as the shadow minister for net zero, energy and transport, you would assume he would have a grasp on the issue facing the North Sea.

He tried, and failed, yesterday to “gotcha” Greens co-leader Lorna Slater on her party’s commitment to stopping oil and gas exploration during the term of this parliament.

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Kerr interrupted to ask his query smugly, as if stopping oil and gas exploration isn’t an immediate priority, or that it actually has a wide backing from the public. Not to mention that it is probably one of the main things that will stop the climate crisis from deepening.

Slater’s laughter in response was quite fitting, as she replied: “You’ll be delighted, the entire manifesto was written by the party and isn’t up to me to say so we will be going by what is in the manifesto.” What else can you do but laugh, when faced with such ignorance?

The UK Government have refused to stop oil and gas licences for exploration, something that will be seen as a massive mistake in years to come if the temperature keeps rising. And the fact that the Tories can sit there and laugh it away as if securing a job transition for those workers isn’t vital, is absolutely shameless.

Instead of ploughing money into oil fields that are going to dry up – and let’s be honest, are destroying the planet – we need some fresh ideas, and we need to transition into renewables and technologies that will support those skilled workers to move into a new sector of the energy industry.

What we don’t need is Tories who don’t seem to understand that oil and gas does have to stop, whether they like it or not.