Scots have been urged to tackle climate change as a “shared national endeavour” as the Scottish Government announced a green summit with businesses and a sweeping review of all policies. Environment secretary, Roseanna Cunningham, said that responding to the climate emergency “must be hardwired into our national psyche” as the issue was “not just about government action”. And she called on the UK government to accept the same zero emissions target of 2045, adopted by the Scottish Government last week. However, despite her pledge that climate change would “be at the core of our next Programme for Government and Spending Review”, the Scottish Greens said they would refuse to back future government budgets if financial decisions were not focused on the environment. Campaign group Extinction Rebellion Scotland, also denounced the statement as “rearranging the deckchairs on the Titanic”, and demanded the zero emissions targets to be brought forward to 2025. Ms Cunningham’s statement comes a week after the Scottish Government announced it had scrapped its plans to cut Air Departure Tax in the light of the “climate emergency” – and that its support for a third runway at Heathrow was also being reviewed. It has also challenged opposition parties to back its proposed Workplace Parking Levy as an environmental policy. It also came just hours after Chris Stark, chief executive of the Committee on Climate Change, which recommended the 2045 deadline for zero emissions, told MSPs that policies in Scotland needed to “step up to the task” if the target was to be met. Ms Cunningham also laid down a challenge for critics of the change in the Scottish Government’s focus: “For those saying this is not enough – what is your offer? How will you help to support a fair and just transition for the people of Scotland? Work with us to bring on board those who are perhaps less convinced about the need for action; look closely at your own activities and those of your organisations and see what more you can do. “For those saying this is too much and too expensive, the evidence shows that the global cost of inaction far outweighs the cost of action. Future generations will end up paying even more if we fail to take action now.” Earlier in the day MSPs on the environment committee had heard from members of the Committee of Climate Change who said the 2045 target for Scotland was the “most ambitious in the world.”
Scotsman 14th May 2019 read more »
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Herald 14th May 2019 read more »
Targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions in Scotland are the “most ambitious in the world”, according to experts. Speaking at Holyrood on Tuesday, representatives from the CCC told MSPs it is a “critical moment” for targets to be set in order to combat climate change. In its report, the CCC indicated that Scotland has greater potential to remove pollution from its economy than the UK overall, and therefore concluded that the country could credibly adopt a more ambitious target than the UK. Professor Piers Forster, a CCC member, said: “Some other countries are considering quite similar targets but I think we can say with confidence that the 2045 target for Scotland we set is currently the most ambitious in the whole world.” As part of the work towards achieving the goal, Scotland will also aim to reduce emissions by 70% by 2030 and 90% by 2040.
Herald 14th May 2019 read more »