15.4 Annex D: Developing the Climate Change Plan - stakeholder engagement
15.4.1 The Scottish Government values the input of stakeholders in developing plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in Scotland. In developing the draft Climate Change Plan there has been ongoing engagement with key stakeholders in both specific sectors covered by the draft Plan and general engagement on the process for developing the draft Plan, including an interactive seminar on the TIMES model on 15 September 2016.
15.4.2 In addition to sector-specific meetings and events for stakeholders (such as an Agriculture event on 26 October 2016), we held a major cross-sector stakeholder engagement event on 8 December 2016.
Overview of event
15.4.3 This event provided an opportunity for the Scottish Government to explain the approach to developing the draft Climate Change Plan (including the TIMES model), how this links with the draft Energy Strategy and to share work done to date with stakeholders (setting out an overall pathway and sector carbon envelopes alongside draft policy outcomes and associated policies and proposals.) The event was attended by over 100 stakeholders representing a range of different sectors including public sector, business, third sector and academia.
15.4.4 The delegates took part in two sets of table discussions focused on various aspects of the draft Plan including specific sector policies and proposals. The table discussions covered the following sectors:
- Electricity (the generation and wider electricity system for Scotland)
- Services (non-residential buildings and heat in the public and commercial sectors)
- Residential (all of Scotland's housing, including private social and rented housing)
- Transport (active travel, bus, rail, aviation, maritime, canals, freight and private motoring, together with associated infrastructure)
- Industry (all industrial activity and manufacturing in Scotland, including the heavy industry covered by the European Union Emissions Trading System)
- Agriculture (activities related to the rearing of livestock and cultivation of land for food or energy crops)
- Land use (expanding Scotland's woodland area, and restoring peatland habitats to sequester more carbon)
15.4.5 There were also table discussions focused on the TIMES model, the draft monitoring framework, and emerging findings from the Climate Conversations with the general public. We asked delegates to: provide their initial responses to work done to date on the draft Plan and policies and proposals; identify the main opportunities and challenges ahead; and share their initial thoughts on the respective roles of the Scottish Government and the various partners and stakeholders in delivering across the agenda.
Feedback from stakeholders
15.4.6 The overall reactions from participants were positive and they welcomed the ambitious approach to tackling climate change as a cross-government priority. There was an appetite and support for bold action and change across the whole society and acknowledgment that this will require a concerted effort by all sectors and strong leadership at all levels.
15.4.7 Feedback from table discussions has been considered and reflected in the specific sector chapters of the draft Plan where relevant and will also inform future engagement. Delegates identified a number of key challenges as well as opportunities for Scotland's low carbon future. There was consensus that whilst the technical aspects of the draft Plan and the focus on economy were very important, it was essential that the draft Plan also included wider non-economic benefits of climate change action including health and wellbeing.
15.4.8 Delegates raised concerns about the wider political and financial context at Scottish, UK and international levels and the potential impact this might have on climate change action and the draft Plan. They also identified current societal and cultural attitudes and expectations as a major challenge, travel and transport growth projections; consumption levels and awareness of impact of personal behaviours and habits.
15.4.9 Some participants also expressed concerns about social inequality and climate justice (e.g. fuel poverty) and the need to reflect this in all policies and proposals.
15.4.10 The attendees identified numerous opportunities arising from the draft Plan including growth and innovation in the low carbon economy and associated job creation as well as wider societal benefits, e.g. public health improvements through improved air quality/more active travel etc.
15.4.11 There was a particular recognition of the role of communities in delivery and the potential wider impact on behaviours/societal transformation as a result of community led action. The engagement of young people was also seen as a key driver for change and many attendees noted that the younger generation's attitudes towards car use and car ownership were different form the older generation and this was seen as a positive trend.
Role of government and delivery partners
15.4.12 The participants noted that there was a key role for the Scottish Government, UK Government, local government and wider public sector as well as business and third sector in delivery. Key themes included:
- appropriate regulation, planning and fiscal policies to enable and incentivise action
- capital investment and funding incentives for business/communities/third sector
- leadership in the public sector
- education at all levels - upskilling and training, facilitating knowledge exchange
15.4.13 Communication and engagement were also seen as essential in ensuring successful implementation. There was an appetite for developing a clear, ambitious vision for Scotland's low carbon future. The Climate Conversations were welcomed and there was support for promoting these more widely across Scotland to raise awareness of climate change, get buy in and influence behaviours. There was discussion about how the final Climate Change Plan could be disseminated as widely as possible - 'make all of Scotland own it'. This 'Team Scotland' approach included the roles of business, the third sector, communities, individuals and society as a whole.
15.4.14 The draft Climate Change Plan and draft Energy Strategy set out very challenging but achievable goals which will tackle climate change while also boosting Scotland's productivity. We are committed to working even more closely with business, and the public and third sectors, to finalise and implement these plans together, and secure sustainable economic growth driven by investment, innovation, exports and inclusion.
Email: Kirsty Lewin
Phone: 0300 244 4000 – Central Enquiry Unit
The Scottish Government
St Andrew's House