Scottish Parliament must unite again to improve climate change action plan

Crunch time for MSPs on climate change

MSPs of all political parties must remain committed to the world leading Climate Change Act passed in 2009, by strengthening the draft Report on Proposals and Policies (RPP) put before Parliament today. [1]

The RPP is the key plan to deliver our climate targets. It describes how we can play our full part in preventing the run away costs of dangerous climate change by ensuring the 2020 climate target could be achieved. The draft report will be subject to 60 days parliamentary scrutiny and Stop Climate Chaos Scotland (SCCS) is calling on all MSPs to improve the draft plan and ensure the Scottish budget supports its implementation.

The plan describes the emissions reduction opportunities from every sector of the Scottish economy including land-use, energy efficiency of our buildings and transport.

Dr Sam Gardner, Co-chair of the SCCS Policy Group said:

"Although the action plan shows Scotland can achieve the emission targets set out in the Climate Change Act, it also clearly shows there is much still to do to if we are to have confidence that these targets will actually be met. All parties across the political divide must now seize the opportunity to improve this draft and turn aspiration into action. This action plan could secure the reduction in greenhouse gases we need to see. This would also improve our nation's health, create new jobs, make our roads safer, save households money and help to create a fairer society".

Jim Densham, Senior Land Use Policy Officer at RSPB Scotland said:

"The land use sector has the unique opportunity to take carbon out of the atmosphere by locking it away in soil and vegetation. The measures within the RPP will go some way to helping land managers to do this and also cut their GHG emissions. However, too many of the land use policies are voluntary measures and rely on agri-environment funding, which we hear today has now been reduced. A compulsory approach is urgently needed to ensure farmers to adopt money saving carbon-friendly farming practices. The Scottish Government must commit to new funding for restoration of 600,000 hectares of peatland habitats so that they move from being degraded emitters of carbon, to secure and increasing stores of carbon rich soils."

Chas Booth from the Association for the Conservation of Energy said:

"We welcome many of the energy saving policies and proposals set out in the RPP, including the commitment to stronger energy standards for new buildings in 2013, continued insulation schemes and a more ambitious standard for existing social rented homes. However, the level of ambition still falls well short of the contribution housing can and should make to the 42 per cent target by 2020. We therefore urge the Scottish Parliament to strengthen this delivery plan with the inclusion of £100m per year for universal area-based energy saving schemes and low interest loans and grants for more expensive measures, as well as the introduction of minimum energy efficiency standards for private housing from 2015."

Colin Howden of Transform Scotland said:

"This document shows that significant emissions cuts can be achieved in the transport sector should the right policies be put in place. We want to see the Parliament take decisive action to translate intention into action on transport. Transport policies that deliver for the climate will also make Scotland a more productive and civilised place. "


Notes to Editors

[1] The RPP can be found:

[2] Scottish Climate Change Act can be found

[3] SCCS Briefing on RPP

[4] Stop Climate Chaos Scotland (SCCS) is a diverse coalition of over 60 organisations campaigning together on climate change, including environment, faith and development organisations, trade and student unions and community groups. For more information visit

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