The Scottish Greens co-leader Lorna Slater has insisted that her party could catch Labour in next year’s Holyrood elections.

Speaking at the party's online conference she said that opinion polls showed the “momentum is behind us”, with rising levels of support for the Greens adding: “We can be the spark that brings hope.”

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The party returned six MSPs in the last Scottish Parliament election in 2016, with Scottish Labour returning 24 MSPs – but more recent polls have shown support for Richard Leonard’s party declining.

Ms Slater said that at the next Scottish Parliament elections in May the Greens could “grow our numbers all over Scotland”.

She said: “We can elect three MSPs in Glasgow and Lothian, we can elect MSPs in the North East and Central for the first time and win back the South of Scotland.

“The opinion polls show we can do this, maybe we can catch Scottish Labour. The momentum is behind us and we can do the work needed to make this dream a reality.”

She stated that the Greens were the only party with the policies in place to tackle the looming climate change emergency and touched on the the “triple threat of Brexit, a global pandemic and the increasingly evident climate catastrophe”.

Addressing members of the party she added: “It’s clear that people want solutions, we want to see a future that isn’t bleak, the Greens can provide that.”

She criticised the Labour Party for its support for a new coal mine in Cumbria, and said the Tories wanted to add “extra lanes of traffic jams to our motorways”.

Meanwhile, she said the SNP had refused to commit to ending oil and gas extraction in the North Sea

“We are the only party that has practical policies that will bring about the change that is needed,” the Green insisted.

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She spoke about Scotland’s potential to “lead the renewables charge not just in these islands but across this continent”.

Ms Slater said: “The Scottish Greens know Scotland has the potential to be a positive role model for the world leading efforts to tackle the climate emergency and restructuring our economy to build a secure future for us all.”

She added: “The future doesn’t have to be bleak, the future can be brilliant.”