The Scottish Government has laid out a plan to lead the country’s “economic transformation” towards a net-zero economy over the next decade.
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon announced a string of cash funds to help public transport, homes and the regions most reliant on oil and gas sectors make the change as part of a new Programme for Government strategy.
Details of the blueprint will be rolled out over the next 12 months under the banner, the Just Transition Plan.
In particular, a £500m fund will be directed at helping the oil and gas reliant regions of the northeast and Moray to make the transition to renewables, Sturgeon told the Scottish Parliament today.
The government also announced it will invest £240 million in an Energy Transition Programme – funding industry to play a leading role in the development and deployment of new, low carbon technologies, and support the development of hydrogen and carbon capture and storage.
The strategy also came with a drive towards decarbonising Scotland’s bus network – backed by £50 million this year through the new Scottish Zero Emission Bus Challenge Fund.
Claire Mack, Chief Executive of Scottish Renewables, said: “Scottish Renewables is pleased to see the ambition to achieve net-zero at the core of this Programme for Government and the link being made between economic growth, achieving net-zero and further development of renewables.
“Recognition of the opportunities that exist in renewable energy deployment and the need to address challenges around supply chain growth and transitioning jobs as a partnership with industry is helpful and welcome.”
The First Minister also announced increased funding for home energy and green heating system installations, another £50 million to support those in fuel poverty through the heat transition, and another £30 million for the introduction of efficient heating in social housing.
Mack added: “The target to decarbonise heating in one million homes by 2030 reflects a priority area from an emissions and jobs perspective and this needs to be an ambition that grows.
“A focus on the necessary actions to enable the development pipeline through planning and wider policy support will accelerate us towards the 2030 and net-zero targets as well as pulling the economic benefits to Scotland forward.
“The Blue Economy Strategy and action plan will be able to highlight the many opportunities and benefits available to us here in Scotland through continuing to support and grow our incredible wave and tidal sector.”