Climate Change Plan 2018-2032 - update: strategic environmental assessment - draft

Draft strategic environmental assessment of the update to the Climate Change Plan 2018 to 2032. The appendices are available as a supporting file on this page.

Chapter 5 - Mitigation and Enhancement

5.1 The CCPu sets out a series of climate change mitigation measures and the ambitions, policies and proposals aim to meet Scotland’s climate change statutory targets. They are also likely to have beneficial impacts for adapting to and improving resilience to the predicted effects of climate change. The following paragraphs set out key opportunities for mitigation of adverse environmental effects and enhancement of positive environmental effects for each sector.

5.2 For Agriculture there are a range of benefits across the SEA topics, including air, water, soil and biodiversity, flora and fauna. Opportunities to further enhance these benefits, could be achieved through supporting landscape scale co-ordination of these actions.

5.3 For Electricity key benefits relate to climatic factors, population and human health and material assets. Adverse effects could arise from the development of new, or the upgrading of existing, infrastructure particularly identified in relation to cultural heritage and landscape and potential mixed effects on biodiversity, flora and fauna, soil and air. Further understanding is needed of potential adverse effects through monitoring, and where additional mitigation may be required through strengthening advice in existing guidance. The potential for adverse impacts from the construction and operation of new energy developments will be further managed through the use of appropriate design and construction management measures at the project level. Existing regulatory regimes should ensure that any development projects will be subject to appropriate controls, minimising the potential impacts of activities and infrastructure.

5.4 The policies and proposals for LULUCF bring about key benefits in terms of climatic factors, however, mixed effects for landscape, biodiversity, flora and fauna may arise as a result of large-scale landscape change with potential longer-term effects. There is also potential for short term impacts from woodland planting for soil and water. Priorities for woodland planting need to be balanced against the biodiversity value of other habitat types to reflect the biodiversity emergency. There may be a role for enhanced guidance on decision making for woodland creation to help mitigate both long- and short-term environmental effects in relation to this, and on guiding species type in relation to maximising carbon sequestration, and climate change risk from pests and disease.

5.5 The decarbonisation of Scottish industry has positive effects on climatic factors, air quality and material assets. There is potential for localised adverse impacts on some topic areas from project level construction and infrastructure improvement works, including population and human health, soil, water, air, biodiversity, flora and fauna, cultural heritage and landscape and geodiversity. Potential impacts are likely to be mitigated by existing mechanisms such as the planning system, SEPA regulation, EIA, HRA, guidance and on-site management measures.

5.6 Negative Emissions Technologies bring benefits primarily in relation to climatic factors and material assets, but also for population and human health as a result of associated benefits for air quality. However, policies and proposals supporting bioenergy such as biomass may have mixed effects in relation to air quality. Ensuring appropriate levels of regulation of biomass installations will mitigate potential environmental effects.

5.7 There are a wide range of benefits across the built environment, with synergy between positive effects for climatic factors and population and human health for domestic buildings through increased energy efficiency and lower fuel costs. Negative impacts will arise from retrofitting older buildings to improve energy efficiency, including undertaking works in roof spaces and attics, particularly impacting and biodiversity, flora and fauna. External works will have impacts on cultural heritage and the historic environment, with potential wider landscape impacts. An area based co-ordinated approach such as that promoted by Scotland’s Energy Efficiency Programme, will also help to mitigate this potential impact through the consideration of cumulative impacts. This will be particularly relevant in areas that are designated for their cultural heritage.

5.8 Decarbonising transport has largely positive effects in relation to climatic factors, population and human health, and air, with key synergies between reductions in emissions, improved air quality and increased active travel. Opportunities to enhance the positive effects are associated with co-ordination of local actions to achieve a strongly integrated transport network.

5.9 Reducing waste, and changing how we consume and use materials, has largely positive effects in relation to climatic factors and material assets as a result of overall reductions in waste generated. Potentially localised negative effects may arise from the development of new recycling and waste management facilities. Mitigation of these environmental effects maybe achieved through focusing development on existing sites or brownfield land, and the role of existing mechanisms such as the planning system, SEPA regulation, EIA, HRA, and on-site management measures.



Back to top