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by Liam Kirkaldy
28 August 2019
Ministers urged to bring forward Circular Economy Bill

Ministers urged to bring forward Circular Economy Bill

A coalition of cross-sectoral organisations have come together to urge the Scottish Government to prove it is “serious about climate change” by bringing forward a circular economy bill in the upcoming Programme for Government.

Led by Scottish Environment LINK, the coalition is made up of over 30 organisations, including environmental NGOs, anti-poverty campaigners and engineering groups, with a call for a new Circular Economy Bill which includes targets for reducing consumption of resources.

With the SNP having committed to bringing forward a bill in the current parliamentary term, the alliance is calling for ministers to use the upcoming Programme for Government, expected next week, to go further than current action aimed at reducing plastic consumption.

The coalition argues that reducing waste would help address climate change and biodiversity loss.

Matthew Crighton, convenor of ScotLINK’s economics group, said: “The aim of the coalition is simple, we want a strong Circular Economy Bill which will set ambitious targets for reducing the nation’s material footprint – the amount of stuff which our economy uses. If the Scottish Government is serious about climate change then such a bill must be included in the forthcoming Programme for Government because the two are intimately connected.

“Scots have responded with alarm to plastic pollution in our oceans, but the problem goes far wider than that. The Scottish Government’s commitment to drinks containers is commendable. However, this is only one example of extended producer responsibility, there are other major waste streams where items need to be banned, taxed, or carry charges.

“To protect the environment on which we depend, we urgently need to change the ways in which we make and use products and services, using less raw materials and reducing our demand on the planet’s resources. We’d like the Government to set a pathway to ‘One Planet Prosperity’ where we only use a sustainable and fair share of the world’s resources.”

The alliance is made up of the Association for the Protection of Rural Scotland, Butterfly Conservation Scotland, Cairngorms Campaign, Friends of the Earth Scotland, Marine Conservation Society, Froglife Scotland, Trees for Life, Scottish Wild Land Group, Scottish Wildlife Trust, Binn Group, Blythwood Care, Circular Edinburgh, Coastal Communities Network Scotland, Construction Scotland Innovation Centre, CRNS - Community Resource Network Scotland, Eco-congregation, EAUC - the Alliance for Sustainability Leadership in Education, EcoIdeaM Ltd, Fidra, Green Alliance, IBioC – Industrial Biotechnology Innovation Centre, IEMA, Keep Scotland Beautiful, Oxfam Scotland, Project Heather, Remade Network, Resource Futures, Ricardo Energy and Environment, SMaSH – The Scottish (Managed) Sustainable Health Network, Soilutions Ltd, Tearfund, UNISON, WasteSwitch Ltd, Wellbeing Economy Alliance Scotland.

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