SNP ministers have been accused of “moving the goalposts” to mask their failure to meet a green jobs target.
Finance Secretary Kate Forbes suggested the criteria for “green jobs” should be widened in response to questions over the SNP’s missed low-carbon employment goals.
The Scottish Government pledged in 2010 to produce 130,000 green jobs by 2020 but the objective has been criticised by opponents after only a fraction of roles expected had materialised.
The latest figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) have revealed that the number of estimated jobs in Scotland’s “low-carbon and renewable energy economy” fell from 21,700 in 2019 to 20,500 in 2020 – a drop from 23,200 in 2014.
In 2015, Scotland had 22,900 green jobs, before the number increased to 24,000 in 2016 – but fell to 22,100 in 2017 and 23,100 in 2018.
Facing questioning from Scottish Labour net zero, energy and transport spokesperson Colin Smyth, the Finance Secretary said: “In terms of green jobs, we at the moment are doing quite a lot of work internally in the government in terms of trying to measure green jobs, because there are very narrow ways of measuring green jobs.