Roseanna Cunningham, Cabinet Secretary for Climate Change, Environment and Land Reform, says Scotland will continue to play its full part in contributing to EU-wide environmental policies.
Ms Cunningham gave the commitment in a letter to environmental organisations ahead of a meeting on Thursday to discuss the implications of the EU referendum result.
The Cabinet Secretary said, “The EU referendum result has created considerable uncertainty – but what remains certain is the position of the Scottish Government. We resolutely believe that membership of the European Union delivers considerable social, economic, environmental and cultural benefits for individuals, businesses and communities across Scotland.
Our priority is to protect Scotland’s interests.
“Scotland is still firmly in the EU and, as the First Minister has already stated, we are considering all possible options to ensure Scotland’s continuing relationship with the EU. Since the referendum result, Scottish Minsters have been actively engaged in discussions with key stakeholders to emphasise this point.
“We will be doing our absolute utmost to protect our position as climate change leaders, to continue to play the role that we have been playing in contributing to EU-wide environmental policies, and to make sure that we maintain, protect and advance our own environment.
“For example, the current consultation on the scientific case to classify 10 sites as marine Special Protection Areas (SPAs) is required by the EU Wild Birds Directive. I am very clear that Scotland, as a responsible EU citizen, has a continuing moral and legal obligation to protect our country’s magnificent natural environment.”
Dr Richard Dixon, Director of Friends of the Earth Scotland, “This is a very welcome initiative. There is certainly plenty to talk about, with decades’ worth of environmental progress to be maintained. One of the strongest benefits of being in the EU has been the chance to work together on the big environmental problems that affect us all, from acid rain to climate change, and Scotland must work out how to continue to make a strong contribution. A vital issue will be how we keep climate change ambitions high in Scotland in any new constitutional arrangement.”
Stuart Housden, Director, RSPB Scotland said, “RSPB Scotland warmly welcomes the Cabinet Secretary’s initiative in seeking engagement with stakeholders. Whatever the outcome of discussions between the Scottish Government, the UK Government and the EU, it is vital that the environment is treated as a priority.
“Over the years, the EU and its members have collectively delivered improved environmental standards, critical regulation applied across all member states, and significant funding for Scotland’s biodiversity. This has included the Nature Directives, Environmental Assessment, agri-environment schemes and LIFE funding to support practical action. Scotland as a country with an enviable wealth of wildlife has benefitted significantly.”
A Good Look At How Homes Will Become More Energy Efficient Soon
Everyone always talks about ways they can save energy at home, but the tactics are old school. They’re only tweaking the way they do things at the moment. Sealing holes in your home isn’t exactly the next scientific breakthrough we’ve been waiting for.
There is some good news because technology is progressing quickly. Some tactics might not be brand new, but they’re becoming more popular. Here are a few things you should expect to see in homes all around the country within a few years.
1. The Rise Of Smart Windows
When you look at a window right now it’s just a pane of glass. In the future they’ll be controlled by microprocessors and sensors. They’ll change depending on the specific weather conditions directly outside.
If the sun disappears the shade will automatically adjust to let in more light. The exact opposite will happen when it’s sunny. These energy efficient windows will save everyone a huge amount of money.
2. A Better Way To Cool Roofs
If you wanted to cool a roof down today you would coat it with a material full of specialized pigments. This would allow roofs to deflect the sun and they’d absorb less heat in the process too.
Soon we’ll see the same thing being done, but it will be four times more effective. Roofs will never get too hot again. Anyone with a large roof is going to see a sharp decrease in their energy bills.
3. Low-E Windows Taking Over
It’s a mystery why these aren’t already extremely popular, but things are starting to change. Read low-E window replacement reviews and you’ll see everyone loves them because they’re extremely effective.
They’ll keep heat outside in summer or inside in winter. People don’t even have to buy new windows to enjoy the technology. All they’ll need is a low-E film to place over their current ones.
4. Magnets Will Cool Fridges
Refrigerators haven’t changed much in a very long time. They’re still using a vapor compression process that wastes energy while harming the environment. It won’t be long until they’ll be cooled using magnets instead.
The magnetocaloric effect is going to revolutionize cold food storage. The fluid these fridges are going to use will be water-based, which means the environment can rest easy and energy bills will drop.
5. Improving Our Current LEDs
Everyone who spent a lot of money on energy must have been very happy when LEDs became mainstream. Incandescent light bulbs belong in museums today because the new tech cut costs by up to 85 percent.
That doesn’t mean someone isn’t always trying to improve on an already great invention. The amount of lumens LEDs produce per watt isn’t great, but we’ve already found a way to increase it by 25 percent.
Maybe Homes Will Look Different Too
Do you think we’ll come up with new styles of homes that will take off? Surely it’s not out of the question. Everything inside homes seems to be changing for the better with each passing year. It’s going to continue doing so thanks to amazing inventors.
ShutterStock – Stock photo ID: 613912244
IEMA Urge Government’s Industrial Strategy Skills Overhaul To Adopt A “Long View Approach”
IEMA, in response to the launch of the Government’s Industrial Strategy Green Paper, have welcomed the focus on technical skills and education to boost “competence and capability” of tomorrow’s workforce.
Policy experts at the world’s leading professional association of Environment and Sustainability professionals has today welcomed Prime Minister Teresa May’s confirmation that an overhaul of technical education and skills will form a central part of the Plan for Britain – but warns the strategy must be one for the long term.
Martin Baxter, Chief Policy Advisor at IEMA said this morning that the approach and predicted investment in building a stronger technical skills portfolio to boost the UK’s productivity and economic resilience is positive, and presents an opportunity to drive the UK’s skills profile and commitment to sustainability outside of the EU.
Commenting on the launch of the Government’s Industrial Strategy Green Paper, Baxter said today:
“Government must use the Industrial Strategy as an opportunity to accelerate the UK’s transition to a low-carbon, resource efficient economy – one that is flexible and agile and which gives a progressive outlook for the UK’s future outside the EU.
We welcome the focus on skills and education, as it is vital that tomorrow’s workforce has the competence and capability to innovate and compete globally in high-value manufacturing and leading technology.
There is a real opportunity with the Industrial Strategy, and forthcoming 25 year Environment Plan and Carbon Emissions Reduction Plan, to set long-term economic and environmental outcomes which set the conditions to unlock investment, enhance natural capital and provide employment and export opportunities for UK business.
We will ensure that the Environment and Sustainability profession makes a positive contribution in responding to the Green Paper.”