12 October 2017
I am writing to thank the Committee on Climate Change for its report on Scotland's progress on reducing greenhouse gas emissions, published on 25 September.
The Scottish Government is currently working to finalise its Climate Change Plan, for publication in early 2018, and we will reflect carefully on all of the recommendations in the Committee's report, alongside those arising from parliamentary scrutiny of the draft Plan and the most up to date evidence and modelling. The public consultation on the Scottish Government's proposals for a new Climate Change Bill closed on 22 September. The targets we proposed matched the forms and levels set out under the high ambition "stretch" scenario1 set out by the Committee in its March 2017 advice.
I am aware that since the time of the Committee's advice, there has been a range of further developments in relation to greenhouse gas measurement science. In order to maintain an evidence-based approach to setting climate targets against this background of rapidly moving measurement science, I am asking the Committee to update its March 2017 advice on the appropriate levels of future Scottish emission reduction targets and the best design of a statutory climate target framework.
The timetable for Bill development and introduction to Parliament means that we would be grateful for updated advice no later than Wednesday 20 December.
1 In the Committee's March 2017 report, the "Option 2" recommendations were for a 2050 target (90% reduction from baseline levels), interim targets (56% in 2020, 66% in 2030, 78% in 2040) and annual targets for years pre-2020 (52.4% in 2017, 54.0% in 2018, 55.0% in 2019). I would like to conclude by expressing my congratulations on your reappointment as Chair of the Committee. Whilst diaries meant that it was not possible for us to meet at the time of publication of this year's progress report, I look forward to us doing so before the end of this calendar year. There is much to discuss, in terms of the Climate Change Plan, Climate Change Bill and the next round of international climate negotiations. I have asked my officials to contact your secretariat to identify potential dates.
Area 3J South