The Scottish Government has put forward a draft policy programme for aligning its economic recovery plans for Covid-19 with its long-term climate, nature and social targets, developed under an agreement with the Scottish Green Party Parliamentary Group. The draft policy programme, called the Bute House Agreement, was published late last week as the agreement between the SNP Government and the Scottish Green Party, which has seven MSPs, was confirmed. Included in the Agreement are measures to help decarbonise some of Scotland’s most-emitting sectors, including energy, transport and buildings. There are commitments to launch a £500m Just Transition Fund for the North East and Moray, to be spent over a ten-year period. The aim of the Fund is to protect those who will be most affected by Scotland’s transition to net-zero by 2045, such as oil and gas workers. The UK Government’s own North Sea Transition Deal was widely criticised by green groups for over-emphasising the role that oil and gas will play in the energy mix in the coming decades, thereby placing workers in Scotland at risk. Elsewhere, the Bute House Agreement binds the Government to invest at least £1.8bn in energy efficiency and renewable energy for heat this parliamentary session; to revise the framework of support for the offshore wind, wave and tidal energy sectors and to increase investment in active travel and public transport. There are also measures to improve nature, including a review of the marine environmental protection framework and a commitment to designate at least one new National Park. Both of these actions should be taken this parliamentary session.
Edie 23rd Aug 2021 read more »
The Scottish government has committed to including solar power in its planned new energy strategy, after the dominant Scottish National Party (SNP) on Friday announced the signing of a power-sharing agreement with the nation’s Green Party. The SNP won 64 seats in May’s Scottish Parliament elections, leaving it one seat short of a majority and, having initially announced an intent to rule with a minority government, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon on Friday announced the deal with the Greens, whose deputies hold eight seats in the chamber.
PV Magazine 23rd Aug 2021 read more »
Road upgrades will not be threatened by the Greens joining the Scottish government, Ian Blackford has insisted. The SNP’s Westminster leader made the claim as his party’s new ministerial partners cast doubt over the dualling of the A96 between Aberdeen and Inverness because of the potential effect on climate change. The Scottish Greens oppose this project and the upgrade of the A9, which both parties have confirmed will go ahead. If the SNP were to renege on implementing the full plan for the A96 the party would break a manifesto pledge to improve the trunk road in the north-east of Scotland, where the Conservatives are increasingly winning seats in former nationalist strongholds.
Times 24th Aug 2021 read more »