Every year, the Scottish Government sets out its budget – indicating how it intends to spend money the following financial year. This document sets out the policy and spending priorities Friends of the Earth Scotland believe should be at the heart of the Scottish Government’s budget for 2021/22 – with a focus on delivering a green jobs recovery.
The COVID-19 pandemic, unfolding against a backdrop of climate breakdown, has triggered the deepest recession in the UK since records began. Tens of thousands of people have already lost their jobs in Scotland, and urgent government intervention is going to be vital to repair the damage the pandemic has done. At the same time, we are in the critical decade for tackling the climate emergency, and meeting Scotland’s target of reducing our emissions by 75% by 2030.
The economic recovery from COVID-19 must therefore be driven by a programme of green job creation and climate action, unlocking the huge potential that the zero-carbon economy has to create thousands of good jobs fit for the future. The Programme for Government presented a welcome focus on green job creation – but this risks being meaningless without significant investment in this budget to make these green job opportunities a reality, while providing the support workers to transition into these fields. This document sets out some proposals that must be included in the 2021/22 Scottish Budget:
- Invest at least £244million in making homes easier to heat
- Investing in the skills needed to fill green jobs
- Expand Scotland’s bus network through municipal ownership
- Targeting money at the right solutions to electrify heat and transport
- Increase Scotland’s Climate Justice Fund