The Scottish Government should ramp up investment in environmentally friendly infrastructure projects in order to achieve its climate ambitions, according to opposition MSPs. Experts recommend 72 per cent of public spending on infrastructure should be allocated to low-carbon schemes such as electrification of public transport and renewable power to meet climate change targets and safeguard society. But the latest figures suggest only 32 per cent of government-led investment in the next 12 months will go to schemes considered the least harmful to the planet. Meanwhile, 10 per cent will be paid to high-carbon projects such as oil and gas works and road-building and 58 per cent to neutral developments such as schools, hospitals and prisons. This represents a small rise in low-carbon investment and slight fall in high-carbon compared with the previous year. However, a new report from the Scottish Parliament Information Centre (SPICe) predicts that future investment is likely to increase for carbon-heavy developments and decrease for low-carbon projects. Patrick Harvie, joint leader of the Scottish Greens, insists ministers must “pick up the pace” of transition to a greener society to stave off environmental calamity and protect communities.
Scotsman 19th Jan 2019 read more »