Development of the Final Climate Change Plan
Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform Committee
1. The Committee recommended that the sections on progress since RPP2 should be consistent and follow the structure detailed in the ECCLR report on the draft Plan. (396)
- The Scottish Government recognises the importance of consistency in presenting information on progress. However, it is important to recognise that flexibility is required as each sector has different forms of progress to report.
2. The Committee recommended that the Scottish Government provide information in the final Plan regarding discussions which have taken place at an EU and UK level in the development of the final Plan, future targets and the anticipated Climate Change Bill. (289)
The Scottish Government works with the UK Government on climate change policy and process , and those policies and proposals where competence is not wholly devolved have been informed by regular discussions between Scottish Government and UK Government officials. It would not be practical to list each discussion between the governments on policies which have a bearing on climate change.
- However, the EU Emissions Trading System (EU ETS) is a significant decarbonisation instrument for Scottish industry and emissions trading is a devolved matter. We have repeatedly urged the UK Government to engage with the devolved administrations on the UK's future membership of the EU ETS in the Brexit negotiations. We have reiterated to the UK Government the risks to energy intensive industries and the power sector of any failure to ensure continued the participation of carbon-intensive Scottish businesses.
3. The Committee recommended that experts consulted on other sectors of the draft Plan should also be listed in the final document, along with how advice provided impacted on the development of policies and proposals. (155)
- As part of the development process of the Plan the Scottish Government set up an Advisory Group to act as a critical friend and sounding board. A link to the minutes for the Advisory Group can be found on the Scottish Government's website. Extensive stakeholder engagement was undertaken in the development of the Plan and details of this can be found in the letter to the Convenor of the ECCLR Committee from Cabinet Secretary of Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform, dated 23 January 2018.
4. The Committee noted that it was important for the Scottish Government to take into account the recommendations developed throughout the scrutiny process, however the Committee recommended that publication of the final Plan should still take place within a reasonable timeframe and in advance of the consultation on the Climate Change Bill. (546)
- Since the publication of the draft Plan we have considered the recommendations of the Scottish Parliament and the views of stakeholders. We have also incorporated updated data and undertaken further modelling, for example, TIMES runs. In addition, we announced new climate-related policies in the Programme for Government 2017- 2018. This has taken more time than the ECCLR Committee might have expected. However, It has been important to ensure the Plan is robust and based on sound evidence and up to date data. The final Plan has been published in advance of the Climate Change Bill which will be introduced to Parliament in Spring 2018.
5. The Committee recommended that the Scottish Government should consider accessibility issues and avoid elaborate or complicated language where plainer text would have sufficed in the final Plan. (555)
- The Scottish Government is committed to ensuring all of its publications are written and designed with accessibility in mind. We adhere to the Web Accessibility Initiative( W3C) accessibility standards to ensure that all our online content it accessible to people with disabilities. We have used plain text where possible in the Plan and we are also publishing a summary document to allow the main points of the Plan to be accessible to a wider audience.
6. The Committee recommended that the final Plan include greater detail on planning for the implementation of policies or technologies which will require significant infrastructural changes and market development, and the steps to be taken by researchers, manufacturers, public and private. (205)
- The Scottish Government understands that some policies and proposals will involve significant infrastructural changes and/or market development. Where that is the case, policy development and implementation will account for these issues. The Plan recognises the importance of sector or technology specific routemaps and action plans. For example, the Scottish Energy Efficiency Programme (SEEP) routemap will be published in May 2018.
- Within the Energy Strategy, the companion document to the Plan, we set out a range of additional actions and research priorities to develop our understanding of the next steps towards delivering our low carbon energy system. The Strategy also recognises the importance of collaboration between academia and public and private sector actors to deliver these commitments.
1. The committees recommended that the Scottish Government make the relationship between the Plan and other strategies, such as the National Planning Framework, the Infrastructure Investment Plan and the Land Use Strategy, more explicit. (ECCLR 109, 476 & LGC 136)
- The Plan includes explicit references to other relevant strategies, including the Land Use Strategy, National Planning Framework, Scotland's Energy Strategy and the Manufacturing Action Plan.