The policies set out in the Bute House Agreement respond to the many and varied challenges and opportunities that Scotland faces. This report sets out what has been achieved so far and the plans to go further.
In the first year of the Agreement, particular progress has been made across a range of areas such as:
- Doubling the Scottish Child Payment to £20 per week per eligible child from April 2022, with plans to extend eligibility to under 16s and further increasing the payment to £25 per week by the end of 2022. This payment, unique to Scotland, lifts children out of poverty by putting money directly into the pockets of those who need it most.
- £58.6 million in Scottish Child Payments was awarded to eligible families from launch until 31 March 2022, providing payments for 106,000 children under the age of six in 82,000 households.
- Bringing ScotRail into public ownership.
- Setting out a strategy for over a million homes to be using zero carbon heating systems by the end of the decade and allocating funds from a total planned investment of £1.8 billion to cut energy bills, improve building energy efficiency and reduce climate emissions.
- Opening the first £20 million of the ten-year £500 million Just Transition Fund for the North East and Moray to help finance organisations, businesses and communities to transition to net zero, creating jobs in low carbon industries contributing to making the area and Scotland as whole more prosperous.
- Introducing free bus travel for under 22s to cut the cost of living for young people, encourage sustainable travel behaviours early in their lives and improve access to education, leisure, and work. Since the launch of the scheme over 17.5 million free journeys have been taken by almost 450,000 card holders.
- Investing a record £150 million in active travel in 2022-23, including more than doubling the funding for the National Cycle Network, a new walking fund, and supporting pilots for free bikes for school age children who cannot afford them. So far, 2,067 bikes have been provided through the pilots.
- Publishing Scotland's National Strategy for Economic Transformation setting out how Scotland will transition to a wellbeing economy, which prioritises people and the planet, and launching the Wellbeing Economy Monitor.
- Banning many of the most problematic single use plastics to tackle the damage they cause to our seas, beaches and public areas.
- Setting out proposals to deliver a New Deal for Tenants which will include action to introduce greater safeguards against evictions, introduce new rights to personalise homes and improve tenancies, and make decisive progress towards a national system of rent controls, better regulation of the rented sector, and new quality and energy efficiency standards.
- Setting out proposals to create at least one new National Park by asking the public what they value most in these spaces and what criteria should be used to decide the location of the new park.
- Launching the Nature Restoration Fund which will invest £65 million over the course of the parliamentary term on projects to tackle the twin crises of climate change and biodiversity loss by restoring Scotland's natural environment on land and at sea. 100 projects have been funded so far ranging from peatland restoration to rewilding Scotland's rainforests.
- Consulting on a Circular Economy Bill to enable us to advance a zero waste and circular economy – increasing reuse and recycling rates and improving waste and recycling services.
- Making plans to expand wind energy generation in Scotland, awarding of lease option agreements for up to 25 GW of offshore wind energy, including 15GW of floating offshore wind, and consulting on an ambition that an additional 8-12 GW of onshore wind be installed by 2030.
- Publishing an independent review of the future of incineration and confirming that the Scottish Government does not support the development of further municipal waste incineration capacity, with very limited exceptions.
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