The watchdog declares Scotland’s climate target unattainable.

Scotland’s flagship 2030 target for reducing greenhouse gas emissions has been deemed unattainable by the government’s independent advisers, the Climate Change Committee (CCC). The measures required to achieve the target by the decade’s end are considered “beyond what is credible” by the CCC, which accuses ministers of falling short on ambitious goals. Instead, they urge the government to prioritize hitting the target “at the earliest possible date.”

In response, the Scottish government acknowledges the challenging nature of the target and highlights that Scotland is decarbonizing at a faster rate than the UK average. However, Scotland has missed eight of the past 12 annual targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Despite emissions being 49.2% lower than the baseline year of 1990 in 2021, the target for 2030 is a reduction of 75%.

Chris Stark, chief executive of the Climate Change Committee, criticizes the Scottish government for not having a plan in place to come close to meeting the target, describing it as a failure. He emphasizes that this is the first instance in the UK where a target has been deemed unattainable, attributing it to a lack of progress overall.

Scotland’s emissions reduction target for 2030 is more stringent than that of the UK as a whole. While the UK aims for a 68% reduction, Scotland has legislated to cut greenhouse gases by 75% by the same date.

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