Scottish Labour MSP proposes jailing big polluters for up to 20 years


Scottish parliament

A  Scottish Labour and Co-op MSP has lodged proposals for an ecocide law that could see big polluters jailed for between 10 and 20 years.

A public consultation launched today (Wednesday 8 November) by Monica Lennon, the Scottish Labour and Co-op MSP for Central Scotland, seeks the Scottish public’s views on the ecocide law plans.

Monica Lennon MSP, commented: “Protecting Scotland’s nature from destruction must be at the top of everyone’s agenda but right now we don’t have a strong enough deterrent to stop the big polluters.

“We must stop eco-criminals in their tracks, and ecocide law is the crime deterrent that our planet urgently needs. Under my proposals, Scotland will be the first country in the UK to make ecocide a crime and the tough sanctions in the consultation could see those who threaten our planet put in jail for between 10 and 20 years.”

Under my proposals, Scotland will be the first country in the UK to make ecocide a crime.

Several countries around the world including Brazil and the Netherlands are developing ecocide legislation in a bid to tackle big polluters. Under Lennon’s proposals, Scotland would become the first UK nation to enforce ecocide law with tougher sanctions acting as a deterrent to eco-criminals.

Lennon lodged proposals for a Members’ Bill in the Scottish Parliament asking people to support an ecocide prevention law. The new initiative in Scotland is supported by Stop Ecocide International. The consultation opens today (Wednesday 8 November) and runs for 14 weeks until Friday 9 February 2024.

Ecocide law
Scottish Labour and Co-op MSP for Central Scotland Monica Lennon.

JoJo Mehta, Executive Director of Stop Ecocide International, said: “We currently lack national and international legal mechanisms to shield us from the most severe harms to nature. Today, Scotland has emerged as a global leader in addressing this legal gap by embarking on the journey to establish criminal laws that genuinely protect both people and the planet.

“In recent months, ecocide bills have been proposed or advanced in the EU, Brazil, the Netherlands, Belgium, Spain (Catalunya), and Mexico. Today, Scotland is joining these forward-thinking nations in taking meaningful, practical steps to address the very real threats we face as a species.”

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