Local MSP for the Linlithgow Constituency, Fiona Hyslop, has spoken in a debate in Parliament on Climate Change and the Just Transition last week (20th April). The debate reiterated the scale and the urgency of the climate crisis and the need for Scotland to show continued global leadership in a Just Transition to Net Zero and highlighted the Scottish Government’s draft Energy Strategy and Just Transition Plan which sets out a just and fair pathway to maximise the opportunities.
Fiona spoke in the debate about the importance of community led transition and highlighted the work of Blackburn in her Constituency, who were selected as one of the 7 Scottish Government’s Climate Action Towns.
“I welcome the fact that Blackburn has been selected by the Scottish Government as one of their 7 Climate Action Towns.
“Local people know their communities best and understand their individual needs, so it is important that they influence what a just transition to Net Zero to tackle climate change and tackle carbon emmissions will mean for their own area.
“In Blackburn, it has already been identified through consultation that jobs and skills are a local priority. I urged the Cabinet Secretary for Net Zero and the Just Transition to drive momentum, energy and resource into the work of these Climate Action towns, and to respond to their needs, so that towns such as Blackburn can turn their community empowerment into action. I recommended that Climate Action Towns like Blackburn could be a priority for retro-fitting to improve home insulation and heat-pump installation reducing carbon emissions, heating homes more affordably and creating skills and jobs for local people in the process.
“We must reduce our carbon emissions, protect our natural world, and achieve Net Zero – we must do so urgently, but we must also do so fairly.”
Fiona also spoke about the need for innovation to tackle climate change and commended Invinity based in Bathgate who manufacture utility-grade energy storage systems, following the announcement that they had been awarded an £11 million grant from the UK Department for Energy Security and Net Zero.