Scotland Cuts Spending on Climate Change Mitigation


Earlier this month, the Committee on Climate Change (CCC) raised concerns with Scottish Government officials following their announcement to reduce spending on climate change mitigation by nearly ten percent.

In the 2016/17 draft budget, the Scottish government announced that they plan to cut their spending on climate mitigation from £502m to £456.2m.

A large part of Scotland’s budget cut is coming on one line – its capital expenditure on energy infrastructure. There is insufficient information about what is actually included in that, and therefore, this will be one of the questions raised by the CCC.

How can Scotland improve their fight against climate change?

There are a number of other areas reported where Scotland have plenty of room for improvement when it comes to their carbon commitment:

  • Planting Forests
    The rate of planting forests, which holds high importance in Scotland, could be much better.
  • Transport
    Transport is a major contributor to Scottish energy demand and greenhouse gas emissions. It is important that they continue to improve the energy efficiency of their transport system.
  • Resilient heat systems
    Providing resilient heat systems is another area in which Scotland (and other parts of the UK) could also stand to make improvements. Scotland plan to make the required improvements by firstly reducing the need for heat – through better insulated buildings – and by ensuring the effective use of renewable or low-carbon heat sources.

The future of Scotland’s climate change commitment

Despite the proposed cuts, it is thought that Scotland are still setting an example to the rest of the UK when it comes to renewable energy and its development. Scotland’s energy efficiency in general is exceptional, particularly in social housing  which  is set to play a big part in Scotland achieving a 42 percent reduction of its carbon emissions by 2020, in line with the requirements set out in the Climate Change (Scotland) Act 2009.

Scotland’s Government have insisted that it has embedded climate change throughout the development of the draft budget and still endeavours to implement the Climate Change (Scotland) Act to support their transition to a low-carbon society.  In doing so, Scotland hope to make their country a leading low-carbon investment destination.

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