Tue 29 Oct, 2019

While it’s been disappointing that Westminster have cut the subsidy for green heating, we have control over building standards and planning and must act now Mark Ruskell

The Scottish Government’s ambition to lower emissions to tackle the climate emergency is already falling behind when it comes to renewable heating, it has emerged.

The existing target for 11% of heating to come from renewable sources by 2020 looks unlikely to be met, with energy minister Paul Wheelhouse admitting only 6.3% was reached in 2018.

In an answer to a parliamentary question, Wheelhouse stated investment in renewable heat in Scotland has slowed down because of changes to incentive schemes by the UK Government.

Responding, Scottish Green energy spokesperson Mark Ruskell said: “For a government that likes to talk up its eye-catching targets on climate, the SNP remain woefully incapable of actually meeting them.

“It looks very unlikely we will get to the modest ambition of 11% renewable heat by next year while Sweden is on course to reach 100%. We need to use the powers we have to make our homes more efficient and rapidly expand heat networks infrastructure.

"While it’s been disappointing Westminster have cut the subsidy for green heating, we have control over building standards and planning and must act now. These targets have been in place for nearly a decade and yet compared to renewable electricity we have seen glacial progress.

"Financial subsidy, even when it was set at more attractive levels, did not deliver a step change shift to renewable heating, this needs more regulation and sector planning from government.

“Four out of five Scottish households currently use gas central heating. Why on earth are newly built homes still being plugged into the gas grid when keeping Scotland’s buildings warm accounts for around half of all energy consumption and climate emissions?

“We need a strong policy framework for warm, affordable and zero-carbon homes, such as we propose in the Scottish Green New Deal.”

Get involved

More like this

Scottish government letting down Mossmorran communities

Fri 14 Feb, 2020

The Scottish Government is letting down the communities who live in the shadow of the Mossmorran Ethylene Plant according to Scottish Greens Fife MSP Mark Ruskell. 

Mr Ruskell is today repeating his call for the Scottish Government to:

-          Meet with communities surrounding the plant;

-          Commission an independent review into health impacts;

Alister Jack dismisses Scottish renewable industry

Wed 12 Feb, 2020

Scottish Secretary Alister Jack has undermined the potential of Scottish renewable energy by admitting the UK Government is leaving its future to market forces.

In a comment in Scottish Questions at Westminster, Jack said that offshore wind turbines being built in Indonesia for Scottish sites is ‘the market economy at work’.

Greens win backing for more powers for SSPCA

Tue 11 Feb, 2020

The SSPCA could be set to get more powers to tackle wildlife crime, after a Holyrood committee backed proposals by Scottish Green MSP Mark Ruskell as part of evidence on the Animals and Wildlife Bill.

The Scottish animal protection charity currently only has the power to collect evidence on crime against domestic animals, but MSPs on the Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform Committee have recommended the Scottish Government explores ways to expand these powers to cover wildlife.