THE SNP's Westminster leader will today demand more powers for Holyrood just days after an ally of Boris Johnson demanded it should be stripped of some responsibilities.

In a keynote speech to a think tank in London, Stephen Flynn, the MP for Aberdeen South, is to urge the UK Government to devolve energy policy to the Scottish Parliament and will call on Labour to back the move.

Most aspects of energy are reserved to Westminster, though Holyrood has control over planning regulations which it can use to block facilities it opposes such as new nuclear stations.

The SNP has long called for changes to the electricity grid system which it says charges Scottish producers higher fees to connect to the grid and by doing so holds back the development of renewable energy in Scotland.

READ MORE: Boris Johnson ally Lord Frost calls for downgrading of Holyrood

Ministers in Edinburgh and London are also at loggerheads over aspects of the devolution settlement, including the recent use of Section 35 to block Holyrood’s gender recognition legislation.

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This issue has been taken to court by Humza Yousaf’s Government as it seeks a judicial review.

Speaking to the Institute for Government, Mr Flynn will put pressure on Labour to strengthen the devolution settlement.

“The Tories’ resentment of devolution comes as no surprise given they opposed it in the first place," he is expected to say.

“The real question now is for Labour – will they continue to mimic the Tories or will they defend devolution by strengthening it?

“We are throwing down the gauntlet to Labour – if they are serious about Scotland they will commit to devolving energy powers to the Scottish Parliament.”

He will add: “Scotland is energy-rich and in the middle of a cost-of-living crisis, it is right that the natural energy resources of the Scottish people are used to serve the needs of the Scottish people.

READ MORE: Stephen Flynn admits Westminster SNP may lose £1.2m in auditor crisis

“But it looks like Labour are destined to repeat the same old mistakes in Scotland. The differences between the Tories and pro-Brexit Labour party are becoming smaller by the day, with both committed to denying us powers and a say over our future.

“Neither Starmer or Sunak will ever deliver the change Scotland needs. Faced with that terrible choice, I’m confident that the Scottish people will choose the only real change on offer – independence in Europe.”

Mr Flynn's intervention comes after the former lead Brexit negotiator Lord Frost and ally of former Prime Minister Boris Johnson urged Tory ministers, "if re-elected", to begin to "review and roll back some currently devolved powers" in light of the issues facing the SNP.

"We, the Conservative Party and the Conservative Government, have allowed this to happen," he wrote in the Daily Telegraph last Thursday.

"It's time to fix it. Ministers should make clear that, if re-elected, they will review and roll back some currently devolved powers.

"In particular, Scotland does not need to be an independent actor on the world stage; it should not be able to legislate to disrupt free trade within the UK; and it does not need to have most tax raising powers currently available to it.

"These powers are embryonic, independent government powers. They aren't necessary to run an effective local administration, which is what devolution should be about.

"I hope, of course, that Labour might do likewise and drop its sneaking admiration for socialism in one (devolved) nation, but I am not holding my breath."

His comments were attacked by the SNP, and by some Scottish Tories.

Mr Flynn said Lord Frost's proposals show the "Tory mask has slipped".
Tory constitution spokesman Donald Cameron also hit back at Lord Frost's views.

He said "What a load of baloney. Devolution hasn't failed and no Conservative should want to reverse it."

Energy regulator Ofgem said last year improvements will be made to energy connections between Scotland and England. It said this would facilitate the transmission of more renewable electricity from Scotland to areas of high demand in England.

In a report in 2021 Westminster’s Scottish Affairs Committee called for an urgent review of the electricity grid.

The UK Government has been approached for comment.

Responding to Lord Frost's intervention last week, a UK Government spokesman said: “We have no plans to change the current devolution settlement. Our priority is working with the Scottish Government on the issues that matter to people across Scotland, from cutting NHS waiting lists to growing our economy.

Scottish Labour’s net-zero spokeswoman, Sarah Boyack, said: “The SNP are once again using the constitution to distract from their own failures in our energy sector.

“The SNP failed to set up a green energy company or to deliver on their green jobs promises. It‘s clear that what Scotland really needs to harness its energy potential is political leadership and good governance.

“A Labour government would deliver a fully costed green jobs strategy with GB energy, which would create thousands of new jobs in the green energy sector and save Scottish households hundreds on their energy bills each year.”