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In this Act, a "greenhouse gas" means-

carbon dioxide;


nitrous oxide;



sulphur hexafluoride.

The Act sets in statute the Government Economic Strategy target to reduce Scotland's emissions of greenhouse gases by 80 per cent by 2050, one of the Sustainability Purpose Targets. This covers the basket of six greenhouse gases recognised by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (see sidebar), and includes Scotland's share of emissions from international aviation and international shipping.

The Act also establishes an interim target for 2020 of at least 42 per cent reductions in emissions, and allows Ministers, by order, to vary the reduction figure for the interim target based on expert advice from the advisory body.

Progress towards these targets will be drive by a framework of annual targets. Ministers must set the first batch of annual targets, covering the period 2010-2022, by June 1, 2010, and annual targets to cover 2023-2027 must be set by October 31, 2011, and further batches set every five years thereafter.

Secondary legislation to set the first batch of annual targets was introduced to the Scottish Parliament on April 21, 2010.