Fri 29 May, 2020

The current crisis has also revealed that governments can provide an emergency response when they put their mind to it Mark Ruskell

The number of people concerned about the climate emergency has grown during the current crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, new polling for the ONS have revealed

The UK stats body has published the results of the Opinions and Lifestyle Survey covering the period 21 May to 24 May 2020, which show 23.4% saying they are more worried about the climate emergency due to the pandemic.

The increase is bigger among the over-70s.

Responding, Scottish Greens environment spokesperson Mark Ruskell said: “Awareness of the climate emergency was already growing, but lockdown and restrictions have made people acutely aware of how business as usual was polluting our atmosphere and driving inequality.

“However, the current crisis has also revealed that governments can provide an emergency response when they put their mind to it. These concerns must be taken into account when we start to recover from the coronavirus crisis and build back a better Scotland.

“For example, the Scottish Government has admitted to the Scottish Greens that even before this crisis 84% of the public and 79% of businesses agreed that Low Emission Zones are a good option to tackle poor air quality. There is a huge question, therefore, about why ministers have kicked them into the long grass. Now is the time to be consolidating our gains and making our cities safer, not postponing progress to make things worse, as well as miss our climate targets.”

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