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Holyrood pledges to ‘maximise’ public money in fight against climate change

HOLYROOD has pledged to “maximise” public money in the fight against climate change.

Scotland’s Finance Secretary Kate Forbes last week outlined spending plans for the remainder of the Scottish parliamentary term, with a focus on increased funding for health and social security.

The push for net-zero was also given a funding increase, from £1.6 billion to almost £2.1bn by the end of the parliament in 2026.

But the review said the government would move from a public funding model to one that is reliant more on private investment.

“To harness this investment to effectively address the climate crisis, [requires] moving from a funding to financing policy model … scaled up to ensure that future climate change policy leverages private-sector investment and action, better amplifying the impact of public investment,” the resource spending review said.

The review also pledges cash for low carbon heating, woodland creation, active travel and peatland restoration, along with funding for a just transition.

SNP Secretary for Net Zero, Energy and Transport Michael Matheson said: “As the Finance Secretary set out earlier this week, the challenging fiscal environment in the coming years means we must redouble our focus on efficiency, structural change and collaboration.

“That is why I am committed to ensuring we maximise every penny of public investment, working collaboratively with the private sector and our communities to accelerate delivery of public policies that will reduce emissions, build resilience to the impacts which are locked in, tackle biodiversity loss and help to create a fairer, greener society.”

But opposition MSPs say the Scottish government is allowing the “offshoring” of profit, with the companies who control the wind farms reaping the benefits of the energy they produce.

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