More Ambition Urged Over Long-Term Climate Targets

23 August 2017, 06:39

Climate Change

Thousands of people have called on the Scottish Government to be more ambitious in setting long-term climate targets.

Ministers are currently consulting on proposals for a new Climate Change Bill, which includes increasing the 2050 target to 90% emissions reduction.

The Stop Climate Chaos Scotland group said the move does not go far enough.

More than 8,000 people have responded to the consultation for the Bill by calling for a rethink on the plans.

Almost 4,000 people have signed a 38 degrees petition urging the Government to set a target of zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 at the latest, and a reduction of 77% by 2030.

Meanwhile, more than 2,000 people have completed an online form on the Friends of the Earth website demanding tougher targets and stronger action to deliver Scotland's share of the Paris climate deal.

Others have contributed to the consultation directly or through other organisations such as WWF Scotland.

Previously the Climate Change (Scotland) Act 2009 set world-leading greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets, including a target to reduce emissions by 80% by 2050.

Tom Ballantine, chair of Stop Climate Chaos Scotland, said: "In 2009 Scotland was setting the pace internationally when we agreed our climate targets, but now people are urging the Scottish Government to keep the country on the leaderboard on this issue.

"The urgency of the climate crisis has grown in the intervening years and Scots want to see more done to ensure we continue to deliver leading action."

He added: "The most up-to-date climate science clearly demonstrates that we need to rapidly cut emissions if we are to avoid catastrophic temperature increases and irreversible change.

"The Scottish Government has proposed a target of 90% reduction by 2050 but this simply doesn't go far enough. It is only a minor improvement on what we were already aiming for a decade ago."

The consultation is open until September 22.