SCCS 'disappointed' by Scottish Government’s lack of public engagement on climate change

A civil society group representing over two million Scots has responded with “disappointment” to today’s publication of the Scottish Government’s Public Engagement Strategy on the Climate Change Act.

Stop Climate Chaos Scotland (SCCS) members lobbied for the inclusion of a strategy for public engagement, but the coalition argues that the paper is “neither very public nor very engaging”.

The Scottish Climate Change Act of 2009 is the world’s most ambitious climate change legislation and includes far-reaching targets. But SCCS, MSPs and the Government have repeatedly acknowledged that these targets cannot be achieved without people in Scotland changing their behaviour, for example how they travel and heat their homes.

Tom Ballantine, Chair of Stop Climate Chaos Scotland said:

“The Scottish Government has let down the Scottish people with this strategy. While there are a number of worthy individual initiatives, the Public Engagement Strategy will not inspire the public to take action on climate change. This is disappointing.

What we need is a comprehensive strategy, but what we currently have is a list of activities – almost all of which are already happening. The strategy needs to take people to the second stage of engagement: action.”

The fact that this strategy has been largely prepared behind closed doors, with no formal engagement with other stakeholders and the general public, does little to encourage us of the Government’s approach. Their process for preparing this Public Engagement Strategy has, ironically, been neither very public nor very engaging.”

Ballantine said:

“We will be writing to the Climate Change Minister to highlight our concerns and ask that the strategy is strengthened considerably.
With the help of two million members in Scotland in churches, voluntary organisations, international and environment groups, SCCS is ready to reach out to all sections of Scottish society to help translate talk into action”

Ends

You can read the strategy online here.

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