The Barrhead News published an article today that flags up a rise in unemployment in East Renfrewshire, in contrast to small decreases both in neighboring Renfrewshire and nationwide.
The news of this increase is worrying, and the following paragraph from the Renfrewshire Chamber of Commerce’s report caught my eye:
The average price of Brent crude oil per barrel has remained at low levels throughout 2015 so far and long term low oil prices represent a challenge not only for the oil and gas sector and the North East of Scotland, but for every business in Scotland that makes up the supply chain of firms in the industry.
It would be dangerous to underestimate how much of an impact the oil industry has on the rest of Scotland’s economy, which is why the Scottish Greens commissioned a major report on the jobs that could be created in a new economy, as part of a transition away from our reliance on oil.
Few would argue that this transition will be easy, but that’s not a good enough reason not to take on the challenge, especially not when future stability from Aberdeen to East Renfrewshire and far beyond is at stake.
We have seen what rapid deindustrialisation does to our communities, and most of us are still struggling to grasp the impact of climate change on life as we know it.
As Scottish Green MSP Alison Johnstone stated, “The need for a clear vision has never been greater.” That’s why I would ask you to support us in promoting a genuine conversation on how we might build a future that is rich in good jobs, low on carbon emissions, and built to last.