The Greens have urged Nicola Sturgeon to stick to her guns on fracking after a former advisor accused her of taking "flight from reason".

Professor Paul Younger, who was appointed to a Scottish Government taskforce to examine unconventional oil and gas extraction, hit out at the SNP leader's comments during the recent election campaign.

Mr Younger said he was “flabbergasted” that all but one of Scotland’s major parties were “trashing” an industry that he said could re-employ North Sea workers in a safer environment.

He added: “The Scottish offshore workforce will simply be abandoned to unemployment or, at best, to far less skilled, less lucrative jobs.

"The only real winner in all of this is Vladimir Putin, who cannot wait to add Scotland to the list of countries that will shortly come to depend on importing gas from Russia."

And he said that the SNP “need not be surprised when any scientist who respects the most basic norms of professional integrity” refuses to work with its ministers in future.

Ms Sturgeon has said that she is “highly sceptical” of the controversial method of gas extraction.

HeraldScotland:

(Danny Lawson/PA)

She recently said that she would rule out fracking in Scotland if there was “any suggestion” that it harmed the environment.

READ MORE: Nicola Sturgeon has 'taken flight from reason' over fracking with 'anti-science' statements, expert claims

Mark Ruskell, the Green’s environment spokesperson and MSP for Mid Scotland and Fife, said that the SNP minority government "would be wise to disregard" Professor Younger's comments.

HeraldScotland:

He added: "All the evidence needed to ban fracking and other forms of risky fossil fuel extraction has been clear for some time, prompting bans in other parts of the world. Drilling for more fossil fuel is incompatible with Scotland’s climate change ambitions and the ongoing uncertainty caused by the SNP’s temporary moratorium is distracting from the opportunity to create lasting jobs in alternative industries.

HeraldScotland:

“Professor Younger talks of precarious dependency on other countries for energy sources but that ignores the reality of Europe’s energy future, where countries will share energy to make best use of their resources. Scotland has huge potential to export surplus renewable energy."