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16 April 2021

SCOTTISH LIBERAL DEMOCRATS MANIFESTO - WWF Scotland comment

We will be responding to political party manifestos in the run up to the Holyrood 2021 elections on the 6th May. You can read the WWF Scotland Manifesto here.

During the past year WWF Scotland has been calling for the next Scottish Government to protect and restore Scotland’s nature, and to slash climate emissions in heat, transport and farming as part of a just transition and green recovery. 

Commenting on the publication of the Scottish Liberal Democrats manifesto today (Friday) Fabrice Leveque, Head of Policy said:

“It’s welcome to see commitments which would put Scotland on a path to a green recovery and create jobs, including strong plans to restore nature and cut climate emissions from heating, transport and agriculture. However, our transition to a sustainable food system will have to ensure nature’s recovery as well as reducing emissions in our farming landscape."

On heat Leveque said:

“The commitment to switch one million homes to renewable heat by 2030 is a vital step to get us to net zero emissions.  We welcome the ambition on energy efficiency, with a doubling of funding for home insulation with all homes treated by 2030, and support for investment in heat networks.”

On transport Leveque said:

“It’s great to see a pledge to make all city and town centres vehicle emission free by 2030, which is essential to driving down climate emissions in our most polluting sector. An increase in spending on active travel is also positive, however we’re concerned that there’s no mention of ending road capacity expansion.”

On Food & Farming Leveque said:

“The commitment to consult on a Good Food Nation bill is a welcome one - it can be the framework for a new sustainable food system in Scotland. Proposals to create a new farming policy that focuses on the transition to sustainable agriculture are also positive, though we must ensure that our future farming policy not only reduces emissions from food production but also reduces its impact on nature.”

On Nature Leveque said:

“The pledge to bring in a set of legally binding nature recovery targets would put us on the path to end biodiversity loss in Scotland. This must be complimented with a host of ambitious policies, and we welcome the proposals to protect and restore carbon rich habitats such as peatlands and native woodlands, whilst phasing out the harmful practices that threaten them. However, to properly tackle nature loss across Scotland, ambitious new planning reforms are also needed to ensure that all new developments are overall positive for nature.”

“Action on climate change in the next parliament will require new efforts across the whole Scottish economy. It is only with ambition across all these areas will reaching our world leading targets be possible. We call on all parties to include ambitious new policies in line with WWF Scotland’s manifesto.

“As we look to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic, governments and parliaments have a central role to play in leading the way in tackling these crises, as fairly and quickly as possible. With COP26 taking place in Glasgow in November, will be an opportunity for the next Scottish Government to walk the talk on climate change by accelerating action, putting in place new investments and policies, and ending activities that work against our climate and nature responsibilities.”

Notes to Editors

[1] WWF Scotland  Holyrood 2021 Manifesto for People and Nature calls for  policies to place nature and climate at the heart of decision making, towards a future with sustainable cities and communities, climate-friendly transport for all, a fair, healthy, nature-friendly and high quality food system, and homes without fossil fuels.  https://manifesto.wwf.org.uk/scotland

 [2] Scottish Liberal Democrats Manifesto https://www.scotlibdems.org.uk/manifesto

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