IT'S HARD to believe that it's been a year since COP26. I remember the clear sense of urgency among many of the delegates. We knew time was running out.

But once again, despite some positive steps on coal reduction and deforestation, by the end of the conference, warm words and ambitious commitments had simply turned to dust.

So here we are again, with world leaders gathering in Egypt to do the same dance.

If COP 26 was 'our last best chance' to tackle the climate crisis, then COP 27 really is the last chance saloon. It has to success in all the areas where last year's summit failed.

We cannot afford another wasted opportunity; and the stakes for communities living on the frontlines of climate catastrophe right now are even higher.

And as the planet burns, the fossil fuel giants are getting richer. This month, Shell reported profits of $11.5bn for the months of July – September alone, while BP raked in $8.2b.

If these kinds of crises and disasters aren't enough to concentrate the minds of decision makers, then what more will it take? How much worse would things need to get?

Let's be clear – being in the room at COP27 is not enough. We need serious political leadership, and fast, to turn the tide on climate catastrophe.

Here in Scotland, we're taking real and decisive action to avert climate catastrophe – albeit constrained by a broken devolution settlement.

We're actively opposing any new coal extraction, fracking, or new oil and gas exploration.

We've announced an end to new incinerators and created a £500 million Just Transition Fund to ensure an equitable transition for communities and workers to cleaner industries.

We've secured extra investment for nature restoration, recycling, and infrastructure for walking, wheeling, and cycling.

And just last week, we launched our vision for an independent Scotland to become the world's first 'Climate Plus' nation, with urgent reforms for energy, tax, and a progressive well-being economy that puts people and planet at its heart.

In contrast, the climate wrecking Westminster Tory government had to be shamed into attending COP27, whilst doubling down on fossil fuels and the failed policies of the past.

That's not leadership – that's climate vandalism.

The decisions made on the back of COP27 could surprise us all. We might see lines drawn in the sand on oil and gas extraction. For the sake of people and planet, I sincerely hope so.

But if we are once again faced with empty promises, we'll keep fighting for climate justice here in Scotland and across the global.

The future of our planet depends on it.