School dinners can be emergency response to wildlife decline

Tue 8 Oct, 2019

The rapid decline in wildlife requires an emergency response in the way food is produced in Scotland, the Scottish Greens have said.

In a question to ministers in the Scottish Parliament, Scottish Green environment spokesperson Mark Ruskell called for an expansion in organic farming in the wake of last week’s State of Nature report, which showed a 41% decline in of species in the UK.

Minister Mairi Gougeon admitted organic farming in Scotland has declined, and agreed to discuss this as part of the next organic action plan.

EU citizens in Scotland need more certainty

Tue 8 Oct, 2019

EU citizens in Scotland need more certainty, even if Brexit doesn’t happen on October 31st, Scottish Green co-leader Patrick Harvie has said.

Responding to the statement on no-deal preparation by Deputy First Minister John Swinney, Patrick Harvie called for the Scottish Government to identify what support EU Citizens will need in the wake of the hardening stance by the UK Government on the issue.

Patrick Harvie said:

Scottish Labour MSPs set to betray councillors over new powers

Tue 8 Oct, 2019

Scottish Labour MSPs are set to vote against the wishes of their councillors this week as Holyrood debates the Transport Bill.

The Scottish Green proposal to empower councils to introduce a levy on employers based on parking spaces is set to be voted against by Labour MSPs, despite the fact the idea originated from their party.

The Workplace Parking Levy was introduced by Labour in England and Wales, successfully implemented by a Labour-controlled council in Nottingham and proposed in Labour’s council manifestos for Glasgow and Edinburgh.

Private prisons come at cost to public sector

Tue 8 Oct, 2019

The Scottish Government must urgently review its private prison expenditure after the Chief Executive of the Scottish Prison Service confirmed that inflation uplifts built into these contracts result in cuts to the overall prison budget, according to the Scottish Greens Justice Spokesperson John Finnie MSP. Colin McConnell made the statement at Hoylrood’s Justice Committee this morning.

In written evidence provided to the committee, the Auditor General stated that the uplifts, “will require additional recurring savings of around £12 million a year by 2022-23.”

Offensive that Prestwick is subsidising dangerous US regime

Tue 8 Oct, 2019

Scottish Greens Co-Leader Patrick Harvie MSP has slammed the Scottish Government for “effectively subsidising the military operations of a dangerous far right regime.”

 

Questioning the Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity in parliament this afternoon, Mr Harvie said,

Johnstone calls for action on raptor persecution

Alison Johnstone MSP Mon 7 Oct, 2019

The Scottish Government’s attempt to tackle the continued illegal killing of birds of prey by introducing vicarious liability has failed and the provision needs urgent review, Alison Johnstone MSP has said today.

Vicarious liability was introduced in 2012 as a “strong response” to the continued illegal poisoning of birds of prey. It allows for a landowner or sporting agent to be held responsible for the criminal actions of an employee, and it was hoped that it would act as an effective deterrent for wildlife crime.

Ruskell hails victory in fracking fight

Thu 3 Oct, 2019

The Scottish Greens Energy and Climate Spokesperson Mark Ruskell MSP has hailed a victory in the fight against fracking, after the Scottish Government finally acted to put a stop to fracking in Scotland following a seven year campaign.

Greens led the first parliamentary debate on the topic in 2012, and have been at the forefront of opposition to this dangerous practice ever since.

Mark Ruskell MSP said:

National investment bank must drive net zero efforts and empower local government

Fri 27 Sep, 2019

The new Scottish National Investment Bank must drive efforts to tackle the climate emergency and local government must have a stake, the Scottish Greens have said.

In the first debate on new laws to establish the institution, Scottish Green local government and communities spokesperson Andy Wightman called for the proposed law to have more vision, by placing its mission to fund a transition to net zero on the face of the bill.

He also called for councils to have a stake in the bank.

Cox comments show Johnson unfit for the job

Thu 26 Sep, 2019

The Prime Minister’s comments in the House of Commons last night that the best way to remember Jo Cox was to “get Brexit done,” sums up his callous disregard for decency, and is just the latest example of why he is unfit to hold high office, according to the Scottish Greens Co-Leader Lorna Slater.

Reforestation rate is woefully inadequate

Thu 26 Sep, 2019

The Scottish Government is hailing a tree planting strategy that will will take 150 years to reach EU average.

Latest forestry stats show that only 18.7% of Scotland is forested, while the European average of tree cover is 40%.

Despite reforestation being essential in capturing carbon and tackling the Climate Emergency, the Scottish Government’s target is for 21% cover by 2032.