LABOUR will today launch its own bill at Holyrood to ban fracking in Scotland

On the day the Paris Climate Change agreement is ratified, MSP Claudia Beamish will begin a public consultation on a member’s bill to outlaw the controversial gas extraction technique.

The Scottish Government is due to publish a series of reports on the economic, health and environmental impacts of fracking by the end of the year.

A moratorium is currently in force on hydraulic fracturing, which involves pumping pressurised water and chemicals into shale beds to release gas.

Critics say it a pollution risk, threatens public health, and would worsen climate change.

Labour, the Greens and LibDems want a ban, while the Scottish Tories support it.

Ineos, the petrochemical giant which owns Grangemouth and currently imports shale gas from the USA, also wants to frack locally.

The SNP manifesto said the party would not approve fracking "unless it can be proven beyond doubt that there is no risk to health, communities or the environment".

However Nicola Sturgeon later modified this to “substantial risk”, raising fears among some SNP members that the party leadership views fracking as a useful source of jobs and taxes.

Ms Beamish,Labour’s environment and climate change spokesperson, said: “The climate science and evidence is clear – the last thing we need is another fossil fuel. We need to fulfil Scotland’s renewables potential and we can’t do that if we allow fracking in our communities. ”

Current Holyrood arithmetic is against Ms Beamish’s bill becoming law.