Scotland ‘must identify how to finance the decarbonisation of transport’

Scotland’s surface transport emissions have increased by 9% since 2012 and are still rising – this makes the sector the country’s largest emitter, making up 37% of total emissions

Urgent action is needed to ensure the Scottish transport sector can hit the nation’s net zero targets.

That’s according to a new report published by law firm Addleshaw Goddard, which suggests while players in
the transport sector is “extremely positive” about decarbonising, they believe the biggest obstacle to change is the issue of identifying where the necessary levels of investment will be sourced from.

Scotland’s surface transport emissions have increased by 9% since 2012 and are still rising – this makes the sector the country’s largest emitter, making up 37% of total emissions.

While the report predicts decarbonising transport still offers a significant economic opportunity for Scotland, it stresses there is an “urgent need for a co-ordinated policy framework” to review “how transport provision interacts today and how these interrelationships should be improved to provide a truly interconnected transport system.”

It reveals some hesitation remains among private companies to commit sufficient investment into the development of new technologies and calls for a review of taxation regimes, better cross-sector communication, more data sharing and better support for businesses to invest.

Carrie Armstrong, Partner at Addleshaw Goddard in Scotland, said: “The report confirms that there is huge optimism amongst Scotland’s transport industry and a will to recognise the enormous economic development opportunity that net zero offers.

“Nevertheless, the overwhelming message is that billions of pounds of investment is needed to deliver net zero in line with the targets set by both the Scottish and the UK Governments. A combination of both private and public money is fundamental to meeting that target – but there is genuine concern that there is not enough available to support the scale of investment required.”

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