Argyll beats Highland council on climate scorecard by 34-0

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Council chiefs have reaffirmed Argyll and Bute’s commitment to tackling climate change after its action plan was awarded 35 per cent in a national survey.

The council climate plan scorecards compiled by Climate Emergency UK analysed the action plans of every local authority in the UK to tackle climate change.

Assessors analysed Argyll and Bute Council’s decarbonisation plan, published in November 2020, and the activities of the climate change environmental action group, as part of its research.

Argyll and Bute did score higher than 12 local authorities in Scotland – seven of whom were awarded zero per cent, including neighbouring Highland Council.

The council declared a climate emergency in Argyll and Bute in September, as well as committing itself to achieving net zero emissions in the next 23 years.

An Argyll and Bute Council spokesperson said: ‘We are not aware of the group, Climate Emergency UK, nor their scoring matrix, however, we welcome the findings of their report that Argyll and Bute is leading the way in tackling climate change in the region.

‘We remain committed to tackling the threat of climate change and achieving net zero emissions in the area by 2045.

‘We have already made a great deal of progress in delivering the climate pledges in our existing action plan, and our Decarbonisation Plan, which was approved in December, sets out further actions we will take to address the Council’s own carbon footprint in its day-to-day operations.

‘There is a long road ahead but are fully invested in becoming a ‘net zero’ organisation and, as we progress, our plans will continue to evolve as the scope widens to include local communities and businesses.’

Climate Emergency UK used 28 points to score authorities on their action plans to tackle climate change. Documentation had to be published online before September 20 – which was days before Argyll and Bute Council declared the climate emergency.

Isaac Beevor, from Climate Emergency UK, said: ‘Councils may be doing good things which aren’t reflected in their action plan. That is why next year we will be assessing all councils on what they are actually doing.

‘Local authorities can help to deliver 30 per cent of the cuts in carbon emissions needed to get to net zero, according to the sixth UK Carbon Budget published a year ago, so it is vital that councils do as much as they can.

‘This year’s scorecards are just the start of the process.’