24 March 2019

Scotland Outperforming Rest of UK in Cutting Emissions

Scot Gov Bill Sets World Leading Climate Change Targets

New independent analysis from the Scottish Parliament’s Information Centre (SPICe) has confirmed Scotland is leading the rest of the UK in the fight to reduce harmful carbon emissions.

Scotland's total emissions reduced by 35% between 2008 and 2016 - outstripping a 27% reduction across the UK for the same period. Meanwhile, England achieved a 29% reduction between 2008 and 2016.

Decarbonisation of Scotland's electricity sector, and reductions in emissions from waste, have helped Scotland outperform the UK overall as emissions continue to fall year on year. The closure of the Longannet power station in March 2016 has also had a substantial impact.

Independent, expert advisers have described the targets in the Scottish Government’s Climate Change Bill, set to be debated by MSPs next month, as at the very limits of feasibility.

The bill would mean that Scotland is carbon-neutral by 2050, and includes an ambition to achieve net-zero for all greenhouse gases as soon as possible.

Commenting, SNP MSP Stewart Stevenson said:

"These latest statistics are hugely encouraging and show that Scotland continues to lead the rest of the UK in reducing its carbon emissions.

“Parliament will shortly debate the Scottish Government’s Climate Change Bill that sets some of the most ambitious climate change targets in the world.

"But there is no room for complacency. We all have a role to play in meeting our carbon emissions targets whether that's as an individual, as a community or as a business.

"The fight against climate change is one of the defining challenges of our time - the SNP is fully committed to maintaining Scotland's place as a global leader in emissions reduction, delivering ambitious, credible and affordable targets for the future."

22 March 2019

'MODO Matters' Says Local MSP

Banffshire & Buchan Coast MSP Stewart Stevenson has praised the work of Modo, the social circus group based in Peterhead which works with young people. The SNP MSP was attending the Modo Awards last night in Peterhead where he presented the Saltire Ascent and Approach Awards, and the Gold and Silver YAVAs (Young Aberdeenshire Volunteer Awards).
The Saltire Awards, echoed by the YAVAs at a local level, are designed to formally recognise the commitment and contribution of youth volunteering. Supported by the Scottish Government, the Saltire Awards enable young volunteers to record the skills, experience and learning gained through successful volunteering placement.

Commenting, Stewart said:

“It was a real pleasure to present these awards to so many talented young people.

“While everyone can appreciate the spectacle of the public performance, in so many ways, the real value of Modo is the important work it does with young people in developing their confidence, helping them to work in co-operation with others and giving them a sense of pride in what they do and in their community.

“Martin Danziger, his team, and the young people who make Modo the success which it undoubtedly is deserve our thanks for their efforts and I look forward to the next community event from Modo.”

20 March 2019

Latest CAP Payments Begin for North-East Farmers

Banffshire and Buchan Coast MSP Stewart Stevenson has said Common Agricultural Payments (CAP) to eligible farmers, crofters and land managers can be expected in coming months.

More than a third of a billion pounds in payments have begun, with around 78% of eligible claimants having already received up to 90% of their entitlement through a government loan in October last year.

In total, over £300 million of European funding will be paid to more than 18,000 farmers, crofters and land managers, offset by the recovery of BPS2018 loans where customers chose to take one.

Commenting, Stewart Stevenson MSP, said:

“These payments are in line with the schedule published by Cabinet Secretary Fergus Ewing and will support investment, jobs and the rural economy.

“It will help to provide certainty for many in rural communities including in my constituency.

“Brexit continues to present the biggest threat to the farming industry. Common Agricultural Policy payments are guaranteed at current levels until 2021, which offers a degree of certainty and stability during these uncertain times.

“The Scottish Government is still pushing for the UK Government to confirm that Pillar 2 funding will be included in their funding guarantee, which they have failed to confirm.”

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