Annual targets SNP reveal climate cop-out

For immediate release 22 September 2010

The Scottish Green MSPs today confirmed that they will oppose the SNP administration's latest climate targets (1) when they come before Parliament. In 2007 the SNP's manifesto pledged emissions reductions of 3% a year - six times higher than the 0.5% target they propose for next year, and ten times higher than the mere 0.3% 2012 target they wish to set.

Patrick Harvie MSP said:

"The Government has been in breach of the Climate Change Act for months now, having failed to convince Parliament to accept a near-flatline set of emissions targets. The Greens and the other parties met Ministers to discuss a range of policy measures which could make a real difference, but instead the SNP have now come back with annual targets which show even less urgency than the proposals Parliament rejected in May.

"Stewart Stevenson is now attempting to pull the wool over our eyes and suggesting that he and his colleagues are being as ambitious as they can possibly be. That can't be taken seriously from Ministers who are pushing through a bigger road-building programme than ever, looking again at subsidising aviation, and proposing new coal power, just about the dirtiest fossil fuel ever burnt."

Given that LibDem and Tory MSPs have offered their support for the revised targets, the Greens argue that both Scottish and UK Governments can no longer be trusted to deliver on their rhetoric.

Patrick Harvie MSP added:

"The long-term targets set in the Climate Change Act were not as ambitious as we would have liked, but even those aims will not be met if each Government gets away with passing the buck to their successor. The proposals lodged today make a nonsense of the SNP's claim to have passed world-beating legislation, and of the LibDem/Tory coalition's farcical claim to be the greenest government ever."