The steps the Scottish Government must take to tackle climate crisis

Croppolluting cars

Ministers must step up their actions to tackle runaway global warming

26th August 2019 by Yasmin Hackett 0 Comments

Fossil fuel vehicles must be banned from city centres by 2030 if climate change goals are to be met, according to campaigners.

The recommendation is one of 12 presented to the Scottish Government by the Climate Emergency Response Group (CERG), which is urging ministers to step up their actions to tackle runaway global warming.

Other proposals include enhancing building standards to ensure new homes have a zero-carbon impact and investing more in renewable energy projects to end the reliance on fossil fuels.

The group warns that these steps must be taken in the coming months to avoid global temperatures rising by more than 1.5C, which would be a “disaster for people and nature around the world”.

Further recommendations from the group include offering public guidance on sustainable, climate-friendly diets, investing £100 million in modernising the county’s agricultural sector, and initiating four new Green City Deals.

According to CERG, these steps would not only help tackle the climate emergency but also make Scotland a better place to live and work.

Claire Mack, chief executive of Scottish Renewables, said: “We are already witnessing the effects of climate change, and now is the moment when we must accelerate our response if we are to avoid the worst effects and secure the many social and economic benefits of moving to a climate neutral economy.  

“This is the time for us all to support strong changes to policy and programmes in response to the climate emergency, and this report sets out our initial recommendations for the Scottish Government’s leadership role.” 

Sustrans, the sustainable transport charity, is another of the 19 groups which make up CERG. Its urbanism director Daisy Narayanan said adopting low carbon lifestyles would support a more prosperous society.

“Transformations to make our cities more liveable, warm homes for all, low carbon diets and support to help farmers meet these new demands – these policies must be the next steps in a just transition to an economically successful and climate-friendly Scotland,” she added.

The Scottish Government said it was committed to ending Scotland’s contribution to climate change within a generation.

A spokesman said: “As part of our response to the global climate emergency, we are putting climate change at the heart of our Programme for Government and will be announcing details of this shortly.

"We continue to look across our whole range of responsibilities to make sure we continue with the policies that are working and identify areas where we can go further, faster.

"We will meanwhile update our Climate Change Plan within six months of the Climate Change Bill receiving Royal Assent, ensuring our longer-term actions match our ambitions.”