SCOTTISH Labour has been accused of hypocrisy for promoting the giant firms making millions from fossil fuel at Holyrood while demanding tougher action on climate change.

MSPs will today vote on the principles of a Bill putting new carbon reduction targets into law.

Labour last night said it wanted to “embolden” the legislation, by setting a target of zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, instead of the 90 per cent cut proposed by the SNP.

However, it also emerged yesterday that a Labour MSP will be promoting the North Sea oil industry in an exhibition next to the Parliament’s debating chamber this week.

Lewis Macdonald, a list MSP for North East Scotland, has sponsored a large display and information stall for Oil & Gas UK, the trade body representing the offshore industry.

MSPs will walk past it on their way to vote for climate change targets.

The Scottish Greens said Labour was two-faced and could not be trusted on the issue.

Friends of the Earth Scotland said it was “sadly symptomatic” of MSPs talking tough on climate change while backing the fuels that cause it.

The environmental campaign also said it was disappointing that it couldn’t organise a lobbying event inside Holyrood about the Bill, but the industry was allowed in.

“This risks reinforcing the misconceptions of some MSPs that oil and gas is somehow nothing to do with climate change,” it said.

Scottish Green MSP Mark Ruskell said: “Last week, Scottish Labour voted down our proposition to declare a climate emergency. This week, as parliament debates the climate change bill, they’ve invited the oil and gas industry to lobby MSPs right outside the chamber.

“It’s clear that on climate policy, like many other issues, Labour is at war with itself and can’t be trusted.”

Dr Richard Dixon, FoE Scotland Director, said: “This is sadly symptomatic of the many MSPs who apparently see no contradiction between supporting the expansion of oil and gas extraction and action on climate change. The extraction and burning of fossil fuels is the key driver of climate change.

“SNP, Labour, Conservative and Liberal Democrats all refused to condemn the industry-led policy of ‘Maximising Economic Recovery’ of North Sea oil and gas in last week’s Climate Emergency debate, which means maximising the damage to our climate.

“We must cut our use of oil and gas - we need to stop going after new sources and plan an orderly but rapid transition to a green economy.”

A recent YouGov poll found 78% of people in Scotland were concerned about climate change.

The most common reasons were concern for future generations (71%), threat to wildlife (65%), natural disasters (62%), and rising sea levels (60%)

Scotland’s greenhouse gas output has fallen by 49% since 1990.

With scientists warning of runaway temperatures without urgent action, the new Climate Change Bill would set a 90% reduction target for 2050 (instead of 80%), with an interim cut of 56% by 2020 (instead of 42%), followed by 66% in 2030 and 78% in 2040.

Critics say it is not enough.

Stop Climate Chaos Scotland, which is due to stage a rally outside Holyrood today, said greater urgency was needed in the next decade.

Chair Tom Ballantine said: “Climate change is the most urgent and pressing crisis facing the world, and Scotland’s targets for cutting emissions must reflect our commitment to meeting that challenge.

“The increasing frequency and severity of climate disasters around the world show that we are running out of time to solve this crisis.

“As it stands, this Bill is out of step with what climate science says is needed. In recent months we’ve witnessed an upsurge in climate activism and public concern, including thousands of school children going on strike to demand more action from Government. Over 19,000 people gave their views that this Bill needed to be stronger, but they have been ignored by the Government. “

Labour environment spokesperson Claudia Beamish said: “Labour will seek to amend the SNP’s Climate Change Bill to introduce a bold and ambitious target of net zero emissions by 2050 at the latest and bolder interim targets. The Bill as it stands simply does not meet the challenges of the global emergency of climate change.

“We can meet targets fairly [with] a Just Transition Commission to ensure well paid jobs as we shift towards the net zero economy and society.

“Scotland deserves it’s very own Green New Deal bringing new well paid jobs - and a legal ban on fracking. This is the future of our planet, the water we drink and the air we breathe. We have a duty to our children, grandchildren and the global south to tackle climate change now – and we will make sure this Bill delivers fairly on climate and intergenerational justice.”

Mr Ruskell added: “We have just over a decade to take the bold action that is required if we want to avert the worst impacts of the climate crisis. The bill as it is written does not go nearly far enough in addressing this.

“Ministers need to set a target to reduce carbon emissions to net zero by 2040 at the latest.”

“It is simply not good enough for Ministers to use the rhetoric of ‘climate leaders’ while failing to take the necessary action to back that up.”

Reacting to the criticism of the fossil fuel exhibition, Scottish Labour said: “Labour supports a just transition to the net zero economy and society in a way that meets robust targets while protecting jobs.

“It’s disappointing to see the Greens attack us on this when they should be focussed on emboldening a timid Climate Change Bill.”