The Scottish Government wants to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 90% by 2050, stepping up its efforts from the current 80% goal.

The devolved administration’s new draft climate change strategy also includes an ambition of achieving a 100% reduction “as soon as possible”.

The Scottish National Party (SNP) government said it would not use carbon offsetting to reach its goals.

Scottish Environment Secretary Roseanna Cunningham argued: “Our 90% target will be tougher even than the 100% goal set by a handful of other countries, because our legislation will set more demanding, legally-binding, annual targets covering every sector of our economy.”

Calls for date for 100% reduction

Renewable energy and environmental groups argued that a date for the 100% reduction should have been included in the strategy.

Tom Ballantine, Chair of the Stop Climate Chaos Scotland coalition, which brings together churches, trade unions, environmental campaigners and other organisations, said: “By failing to ally with the global momentum towards zero emissions – led by countries like France, Sweden and New Zealand – Scotland is missing a huge opportunity to end its contribution to climate change in a generation, attract clean investment and retain its position as a leader on the global stage."

Claire Mack, Chief Executive of trade body Scottish Renewables, added: “While this bill continues to show Scotland’s ambition, we would urge ministers and parliament to set a date for delivering net zero emissions and to remain a world leader in the fight against climate change.”

> See the Scottish Government's statement