A North Sea skit as imagined by Professors Alex Russell and Peter Strachan of Robert Gordon University on behalf of the North Sea oil industry.
A Scottish Greens political message to all those who will be losing their North Sea oil-related Jobs
Hello. My name is Patrick Harvie. I am joint leader of the Scottish Greens.
Some of you might be wondering about the meaning of ‘joint’ given my latest carbon emissions about how we should kill off the North Sea oil industry and you should all become lumberjacks instead of oily people. Do not be alarmed. All my life I have been in deep communion with Scottish trees. I talk to them and they talk to me. They have told me to tell you not to worry about your mortgages, your children’s education or your future. Okay, that big gas-guzzling car you drive will have to go but as you will not be able to pay to fill it up that should come as a big relief to you.
Further, the trees have instructed me to plant a million other trees along the route where we can no longer afford to build the Aberdeen western peripheral bypass; it is a bypass not a route! Let’s face it, that bypass is forty years too late anyway and if completed, it would just encourage people from the south, with no empathy for trees, to drive up here, bypass Aberdeen and spend lots of money on Donald Trump’s golf course. We don’t want that do we?
No, because we also want to build one million wind turbines as well as one million trees and Donald doesn’t like them. My plan is to make the wind turbines look just like trees by painting them green. Of course, there is a danger that until you all learn to be good lumberjacks you might chop down a wind turbine thinking it was a tree. But you would only do that once as you would be electrocuted. And dead. Looking on the bright side as I like to do in my own universe, this would help reduce carbon emissions. Human beings are the biggest emitters of carbon. It will incentivise you to be careful when working as a lumberjack.
My real dream is to live in Scotland on my own. Just me. And lots and lots of trees. I would give each one a name. They would be my family. God I love trees. Now that I think about it, I would not be happy with any harm coming to them. Guess that might give you a problem with your lumberjack careers. Perhaps we the Scottish Greens will give you rubber axes rather than the steel type ones. You can then feel like you are doing a worthwhile job, and imagine that that you are actually being paid, and at the same time get to know the trees. They will take to you much more easily if you are not chopping them down. Now I know there are a lot of you with North Sea oil-related jobs; well 375,000 to be exact. But that makes it easier to get to know your trees as most of you will be able to have nearly three trees that you can personally call your own. And three names of trees are easier to remember than the one million I will learn, but not everyone can be as brilliant as a member of the Scottish Greens.
Now that I have gone to so much trouble to explain the plans of the Scottish Greens, and to reassure you that your new jobs are guaranteed, but not paid, bear in mind that you will pay no taxes. No-one likes paying taxes do they! I would like to make a plea that in the forthcoming elections that you repay me by voting for the Scottish Greens!
Let’s end on a joyous note. Let’s sing this classic ditty together.
“I’m a lumberjack and I’m okay,
I used to be in oil and had lots of pay,
but now I chop trees with my rubber axe,
I receive no pay and pay no tax,
I’m a lumberjack and I’m, o, kay!!!!!”