Mon 17 Jun, 2019

Scottish Green MSPs will stage a series of bids to radically overhaul Scotland’s planning system over three days of debate in the Scottish Parliament, starting tomorrow (Tuesday 18 June).

Amendments brought by Green MSPs at stage 3 of the Planning Bill will seek to improve natural habitats in response to the climate crisis and give communities more power over issues like short-term holiday lets, which blight local areas.

Andy Wightman MSP will also bid to stop hill tracks being bulldozed through natural areas without consent, while Mark Ruskell MSP will attempt to make air pollution a priority of the national planning framework.

However, they face a battle after commitments to cross-party working were ripped up by SNP Planning Minister Kevin Stewart in favour of stitched-up deals with the Tories.

Scottish Greens’ local government and economy spokesperson Andy Wightman MSP, said:

“The Planning Bill should have been an opportunity to reset where power lies and give people a far greater say in decisions which affect them, but instead it looks like an SNP-Tory stitch-up is going to usher in an era of mass centralisation, leaving communities frozen out once again.

“Green MSPs have worked hard to strengthen what was a lacklustre Bill and we’ll fight for our amendments this week, which include measures to regulate hill tracks and short term lets, improve air quality and protect natural habitats. These are important issues that people care about and we’ll do everything we can to win support for them. But if the SNP chooses to side with Tories and their corporate and landed interests it will be a huge blow for hopes of building a fairer, more equal Scotland.”

Get involved

More like this

Councils must have powers on non-domestic rates

Andy Wightman MSP Wed 7 Aug, 2019

Consultation on Non-Domestic Rates

7 August 2019


Today, I have published a consultation that that will help inform the Scottish Greens’ scrutiny of the Non-Domestic Rates (Scotland) Bill 

Expert panel backs Green budget win 

Wed 17 Jul, 2019

An expert panel has backed a Scottish Greens proposal to tackle throwaway plastics by introducing a charge of around 25p on disposable drinks cup. [1]

Power is still linked to land in Scotland

Andy Wightman MSP Wed 17 Jul, 2019

At the heart of environmental concerns is the question of power - who has it, how they exercise it and to whom are they accountable.

Although the Scottish Government make great play of recent moves to empower communities, the reality is quite different.

The Community Empowerment Act was passed in 2015 and was designed to give communities a voice and enable citizens to have a greater say over their local area.