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Campaigners demand tougher climate change targets

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Scottish Government targets not ambitious enough

Pressure form campaigners could force the Scottish Government to set tougher targets on climate change.

It comes after more than 17,000 people responded to a consultation urging the government to raise its ambition in tackling climate change.

Respondents are calling for zero climate emissions by 2050 at the latest and to implement a range of policies to help deliver a cleaner, healthier, greener country.

The Scottish Government is currently proposing a 90% cut in emissions by 2050 and is not planning to include any major new policies within this climate change bill.

Tom Ballantine, Chair of Stop Climate Chaos Scotland, said: “Climate change is the greatest problem of our time. People want Scotland to be at the forefront of the global effort to overcome that challenge.

“The ferocious Atlantic hurricanes, deadly floods in South Asia and the ongoing drought in East Africa show that we have no time to waste. 17,000 people have backed the first minister’s call that Scotland should live up to the commitments in the Paris Climate Agreement.

“At the same time a strong new climate act will create jobs, improve health, and reduce poverty.

“We hope all Scotland’s political leaders hear our campaign and deliver a climate bill that commits to zero emissions and action for warmer homes, healthier transport options and a thriving, efficient agricultural sector.

Gordon Maloney, 38 degrees Campaigner (Scotland), commented: “People across the country want the Scottish Government to take bold action on climate change.

"Scotland has shown strong leadership on climate change in the past, and it is clear today that thousands of people will be expecting that to continue, and watching closely to make sure it does.

"It is our own futures at stake, and we know that there can be no excuse for inaction or for doing the bare minimum.”

The consultation closes on 22 September with the bill expected to be introduced in 2018.

WWF Scotland has created a template consultation response - submit it here.