Climate Change Bill: a partial victory.

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salmondJCB.jpgSo it'll be at least 42%, the interim target. Following the Maximum Eck's embarrassing performance at FMQs last week, having been lobbied by everyone from Cardinal Keith O'Brien to Ian Marchant, and having stared into the face of a Labour Party prepared to move in the right direction and rub their face in it, the Nats finally blinked.

You can tell how full of caveats it's going to be, though. The Liberals already had a 42% down, but that wasn't good enough for the SNP, so they've put down a last minute manuscript amendment with the same figure. I'm sure there's a section in invisible ink about exempting North Sea Oil or the FM's own limo, so the Chamber Desk better be on the ball.

At some point Stewart Stevenson will have to be told the good news, too. Whether or not he gets the science, sooner or later he'll have to pick and choose from those motorway projects he and the First Minister love so much. Without scrapping some of them, plus the new coal power stations the Nats are unnaturally fond of, even 42% could actually be a tough target. 

To end on a more constructive note, here's a starter for any Ministers wanting to find another 8% carbon emissions reductions at short notice. The insulation scheme we proposed in last year's Budget would have (by their own figures) led to a 5.85% reduction all by itself, as well as substantial economic and financial benefits. Just sayin'.

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This page was published on June 22, 2009 10:38 PM.

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