Lack of environmental vision in Scot Gov agriculture plan

Wed 20 Jun, 2018

The Scottish Greens have criticised the lack of environmental vision in the Scottish Government’s latest agriculture plan, saying it lags behind Westminster on the issue.

Rural Economy Secretary Fergus Ewing today (20th June) launched a consultation into the future of agriculture payments post-Brexit, but critics say the proposals don’t go far enough to outline a clear vision for the sector.

Mark Ruskell MSP, food and farming spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, said:

Finnie urges Ministers to intervene over golf course on environmentally-sensitive Coul Links

Wed 20 Jun, 2018

Highlands & Islands Green MSP John Finnie today (20 June) urged Scottish Ministers to step in, after Highland councillors approved plans to build a golf course on the environmentally-sensitive Coul Links dune system near Embo in Sutherland.

Planning officials had warned that the course would have a detrimental impact on a protected wildlife habitat, and had recommended refusal.

Organisations including RSPB Scotland and the Scottish Wildlife Trust objected to the project.

John Finnie MSP said:

Harvie challenges SNP MPs on Heathrow after Labour changes stance

Wed 20 Jun, 2018

Green MSP Patrick Harvie is challenging SNP MPs to resist voting with the Tories on Heathrow expansion after Labour declared that its official position is against building a new runway, calling the plan “incompatible” with environmental and climate change obligations.

MPs are expected to vote on the UK Government proposals next Monday and ministers at Holyrood are going along with the Conservatives in the widely debunked claim that “a new third runway is deliverable within its international carbon commitments”.

Extra 557 children in temporary accommodation shows SNP Ministers failing to tackle Scotland's housing crisis

Tue 19 Jun, 2018

Scottish Greens housing spokesperson Andy Wightman MSP today (19 June) accused Scottish Ministers of failing to tackle Scotland's housing crisis after new figures showed an increase in homelessness, including an extra 557 children in temporary accommodation such as Bed & Breakfasts.

The Homelessness in Scotland statistics show:

Designing fairer devolved replacement for PIP is urgent in light of MS Society report

Tue 19 Jun, 2018

Scottish Greens Social Security spokesperson Alison Johnstone MSP has called on the Scottish Government to pay urgent attention to a new report from the MS Society which highlights the negative impact of disability welfare reforms on people with Multiple Sclerosis.

The report, published today, shows that 33% of people with MS transferred from Disability Living Allowance to Personal Independence Payment (PIP) lost support, with 10% losing entitlement entirely.

Crown Estate Bill proposed by Scot Gov maintains a feudal relic; radical overhaul needed, warns Wightman

Tue 19 Jun, 2018

Scottish Green MSPs will today (19 June) warn that the Scottish Crown Estate Bill being proposed by the Scottish Government maintains a "feudal relic" and risks "business-as-usual" when a "radical overhaul" is needed to benefit local communities.

This afternoon's Stage One debate and vote on the Bill follows the 2014 Smith Commission recommendation that management and revenues from Crown assets such as harbours, coastlines and forestry should be devolved to the Scottish Parliament and that management be further devolved to local councils.

Johnstone: Universal Credit must end after damning Audit Office report

Fri 15 Jun, 2018

The Scottish Greens have welcomed a report from the National Audit Office that outlines how the UK government’s Universal Credit is causing hardship for claimants.

Green MSPs voted with a majority in the Scottish Parliament in October 2017 for the Westminster government to halt the combined benefit payment.

Alison Johnstone MSP, the Scottish Greens’ social security spokesperson, said:

The Greens’ commitment to campaigning for independence could not be clearer

Ross Greer MSP Fri 15 Jun, 2018

“For me, independence is about autonomy, allowing Scotland to meet success and failure on its own merit and not point an embittered finger of blame at anyone else”. These aren’t the words of a dyed-in-the-wool independence supporter, but rather a very recent convert who is no longer able to “tolerate a Tory government prepared to treat devolution with blatant contempt”.

You might recognise these welcome and salient words from the brilliant news yesterday that the former Daily Record editor, Murray Foote will back independence the next time we are asked the question.

For Bike Week: 4 things we will do to boost walking and cycling

John Finnie MSP Fri 15 Jun, 2018

To mark National Bike Week 2018, here’s a round-up of Scottish Greens policies to promote cycling and demonstrate the social, health and environmental benefits of cycling. Did you know that 51% of people in Glasgow don’t have access to a car?

1. Funding for active travel

Harvie: SNP prioritising Heathrow ahead of public transport

Thu 14 Jun, 2018

Scottish ministers have admitted they are relying on, and are content with, the environmental impact assessments carried out by the UK government on building a third runway at Heathrow.

The admission came from Keith Brown at Holyrood today after being questioned by Patrick Harvie, the Scottish Greens’ co-convener. Harvie says it’s strange for the SNP, who regularly claim Westminster is out of touch, to be in complete agreement with the Tories on aviation policy.