Our Land, Seas and Environment

Restoring Scotland's Environment

We face the twin emergencies of climate breakdown and a collapse in biodiversity, with 1 in 9 species threatened with extinction in Scotland. We must take a step back from the brink and restore our natural environment, building a green, zero-carbon Scotland.

This goal is embedded throughout the Scottish Greens’ work in the Scottish Parliament and councils across the country. We are committed to delivering the system change needed to tackle the climate and nature emergencies, as well as the bold and urgent measures we need to protect and enhance our environment now and for future generations.

Green Impact

Scottish Green achievements in the last 5 years include:

  • Created a £10m nature restoration fund
  • Made mountain hares a protected species
  • Stopped plans for a destructive development that threatened Loch Lomond

INVEST IN NATURE AND RURAL JOBS

As part of our plans for a green economic recovery, the Scottish Greens will invest in the restoration and protection of Scotland’s parks, green spaces and natural environment. This will create green jobs across Scotland, particularly in rural areas.

We will invest at least £895m over the next five years in restoring nature whilst investing in rural communities, creating over 6,000 green jobs.

This will include, over the next five years:

RESTORE SCOTLAND’S NATURAL ENVIRONMENT AND HALT THE DECLINES IN NATURE

Currently 18% of Scotland’s land has protected status, but many sites are in poor condition and often designation means little in practice. Similarly, species protection is too often weak. This lack of meaningful protection and investment in protecting vital species and ecosystems has allowed the continued and catastrophic decline in nature.

We will:

A key part of our vision for restoring nature is rewilding, which means restoring our damaged ecosystems to the point where nature can regenerate itself, while helping to rebuild rural communities and allowing people to reconnect to the natural world. Our glens and uplands - many of which have been destroyed by over-grazing and intensive management to support bloodsports - will be allowed to regenerate into the diverse habitats they were prior to deforestation, including temperate rainforests, while also creating wild areas within our towns and cities, giving everyone access to nature. Rewilding will create new economic opportunities and jobs in rural Scotland, helping repopulate rural areas.

We will:

MORE AND BETTER GREEN SPACE FOR ALL

The Scottish Greens will deliver an ambitious programme of reform and expansion of our National and Regional Park network. We will create at least two new National Parks and one new Regional Park. We will invest in our new and existing parks so that they have an adequate ranger service and more powers to deliver its goals. We will deliver a programme of public and community land acquisition so that more of our Parks are publicly owned owned and managed in the public interest.

As in the last Parliament, we will also oppose developments which exploit and degrade our National Parks for profit. As a matter of urgency, we will support a community buyout of the land currently under threat from a renewed Flamingo Land development at Loch Lomond.

The Scottish Greens also support increasing investment in parks and green spaces in both rural and urban locations, to improve access and restore and protect nature so that more people can enjoy nature close to where they live. We will create a Community Greenspace Fund to help communities acquire and manage land in order to provide quality recreational greenspace, including parks, land managed for nature, and community orchards and growing projects.

The Scottish Greens will continue to fight to ensure green space is protected from unsuitable development and will use the planning system to ensure that all new development results in a positive benefit for wildlife and the natural environment.

Changes to local taxation will also encourage redevelopment of brownfield land as a priority ahead of greenfield land.

BUILD A CIRCULAR ECONOMY

To meet our climate targets and protect the natural environment, we need to urgently transform the way we consume and manage resources in Scotland.

Our material consumption accounts for up to three-quarters of our entire carbon footprint, and addressing this by moving away from a take-make-waste economic model could reduce Scotland’s carbon footprint by 11million tonnes of CO2 by 2050.

We will:

TACKLE PLASTIC POLLUTION

The Scottish Greens are committed to tackling plastic pollution and delivering a dramatic reduction in the use of single-use plastics within the next decade.

We will:

 

 

A WOODLAND NATION

Woodland creation could play a major role in tackling the climate and nature emergencies whilst creating rural jobs, giving everyone more opportunities to enjoy quality green space, and boosting rural tourism. Just 18% of Scotland is currently forested, but our vision is to increase this to 40%, and for at least 60% of this to be native woodland. The Scottish Greens will focus on building the public forest estate and supporting communities, small-scale foresters and crofters to create and manage more woodland.

We will:

THE SCOTTISH GREENS WILL ALSO

Work with Nature to tackle the climate emergency

 

Put in place strong environmental governance

 

Protect our water resources

 

Downloads

Downloads of our manifesto in PDF, Easy Read, large print, and plain text, and audio formats are available here: https://greens.scot/ourfuture/downloads

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