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Scottish Budget 2021-2022: carbon assessment

Estimate of the consumption-based carbon emissions associated with planned budget expenditure.

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2. High-level Carbon Assessment of 2021-22 Budget

2.1. Portfolio Expenditure and Associated Emissions

17. Total estimated emissions attributable to the 2021-22 Budget are 10.2 Mt CO2-equivalent. Table 2 shows overall spend and emissions by the individual portfolios and how these emissions arise. Emissions remain broadly proportional to spend, except for Rural Economy and Tourism, Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity and Social Security and Older People, where emissions per unit of spend are slightly higher. Health and Sport, Communities and Local Government, Rural Economy and Tourism, Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity and Social Security and Older People are the largest Budget items, with the highest emissions.

18. Expenditure is shown net of income, in line with the Budget, and emissions are calculated on that basis.[3]

Table 2: Portfolio expenditure[4] (TME excluding non-cash items) and emissions

Portfolio Spend £m Estimated GHG emissions (thousands of tonnes of CO2 equivalent)
Domestic Imported Total
Direct Indirect
Health and Sport £16,664 417.6 634.7 1,046.0 2,098.3
Communities and Local Government £11,831 648.8 413.2 1,085.0 2,147.0
Finance £6,121 6.6 225.3 533.7 765.6
Education and Skills £4,271 107.2 110.9 348.9 566.9
Justice £2,967 81.9 110.5 229.8 422.2
Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity £3,784 486.2 127.6 650.2 1,263.9
Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform £479 14.7 12.8 75.9 103.5
Rural Economy and Tourism £1,126 1,061.3 165.8 267.9 1,495.1
Economy, Fair Work and Culture £1,010 21.1 40.1 84.3 145.4
Social Security and Older People £3,980 231.2 146.4 728.5 1,106.1
Constitution, Europe and External Affairs £80 2.4 3.1 6.1 11.6
Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service £152 4.5 5.9 11.8 22.1
Scottish Parliament and Audit Scotland £121 3.4 4.5 8.7 16.6
Total £52,585 3,086.8 2,000.9 5,076.8 10,164.5

19. Direct emissions account for 30 per cent of the total; indirect emissions for a further 20 per cent – a large proportion of which is caused by electricity generation. 50 per cent of emissions attributable to Budget expenditure are generated outside Scotland and are embedded in imported goods and services.

20. Figure 1 demonstrates graphically the results for individual portfolios and the split by type of emissions (direct/indirect), and also whether the emissions are domestic or imported. As the graph highlights, the emissions intensity (carbon emissions per pound of spend) of individual portfolios are broadly similar. The exception is Rural Economy and Tourism, where the emissions intensity of spend is higher.

21. A large part of this expenditure is linked to carbon-intensive production methods (carbon sequestration through forestry is not taken into account). Note that in the second part of Figure 1, the scales vary by portfolio.

Figure 1: Estimated domestic and imported GHG emissions (thousands of tonnes of CO2 equivalent) by portfolio and generating industry. Scottish Government Budget 2021-22

Bar chart showing emissions for each portfolio and the origin of the emissions (domestic-direct, domestic-indirect, imported) and the industry in which the emissions are generated

2.2. Emissions by Industry Source

22. Total emissions broken down by industry are shown in Figure 2. Some 28 per cent of the Scottish Government's carbon footprint is caused by the use of Energy, Water and Waste, followed by Manufacturing (20 per cent) and Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing (18 per cent).

Figure 2: Overall Government spending - Industry sector share of emissions (domestic direct and indirect, plus imported GHG emissions)

Pie chart showing total emissions from overall government spending broken down by which industry emissions are generated in

2.3. Domestic and Imported Emissions

23. In addition to direct and indirect domestic emissions, the assessment takes into account the emissions generated outside of Scotland in the production of imported goods purchased as a result of Government spending (e.g. food, machinery, IT equipment).

24. Figure 3 demonstrates that imported emissions make up around a half of emissions from Budget spend. There is however a difference between the sources of domestic and imported emissions. Expenditure on Energy, Water and Waste accounts for the largest share of domestic emissions, while expenditure on Manufacturing generates the largest share of imported emissions (followed by Energy, Water and Waste).

Figure 3: Domestic and Imported Emissions - All portfolios

Figure 3a: Domestic emissions by industrial sector

Pie chart showing total domestic emissions from overall government spending broken down by which industry emissions are generated in

Figure 3b: Imported emissions by industrial sector
Pie chart showing total imported emissions from overall government spending broken down by which industry emissions are generated in
Figure 3c: Domestic and imported emissions, thousands of tonnes of CO2 equivalent and percent
Pie chart showing total emissions from overall government spending broken down by origin of the emissions (domestic-direct, domestic-indirect, imported)
Figure 3d: Domestic and imported emissions by industrial sector
Bar chart showing total emissions from overall government spending broken down by which industry emissions are generated in and origin of the emissions (domestic or imported)

Domestic (direct and indirect) and imported GHG emissions (thousands of tonnes of CO2 equivalent)

Contact

Email: Sasha.maguire@gov.scot

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