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Scotland ditches 2030 carbon goals

Posted: Friday, April 19th, 2024

Scotland has failed to meet eight out of the last 12 of its annual targets and has been told by the Climate Change Committee that its target of reducing carbon emissions by 75% by 2030 is unrealistic, The Construction Index reported.

Acknowledging that the 2030 target was out of reach, cabinet secretary for economy, net zero and energy Màiri McAllan said: “We must now act to chart a course to 2045 at a pace and scale that is feasible, fair and just.”

The goal now, therefore, is 100% net zero by 2045.

She blamed the UK government for the SNP regime’s reverse. “With severe budgetary restrictions imposed by the UK government and under the continuing constraints of devolution, we are trying to deliver societal and economic transformation with one hand tied behind our back,” she said.

The Scottish government presents the U-turn as “stepping up action” in its publicity material. The new legislation will be brought forward to introduce multi-year ‘carbon budgets’ replacing the current, annual targets.

Scottish plumbers saw this coming. Fiona Hodgson, chief executive of the Scottish & Northern Ireland Plumbing Employers Federation (SNIPEF), said: "The 2030 targets, which always seemed more driven by the pursuit of headlines than establishing a meaningful, step-by-step roadmap towards the 2045 climate goals, were sadly and predictably abandoned due to their unrealistic ambitions and the lack of a realistic plan to support them.”

The UK Green Building Council argued that it was time for Scottish leaders to step up. Deputy chief executive Simon McWhirter said: “How we heat our homes and other buildings is the third largest cause of greenhouse gas emissions in Scotland.

“We have joined other industry bodies in calling on the Scottish government to use the Heat in Buildings Bill to introduce bold, and essential, measures that will enable Scotland to realise its climate ambitions and bring us closer to our net zero and fuel poverty targets.”

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