Budget Investment Needs To Focus On Meeting Climate Goals

Thu, 02/04/2021 - 00:00

In May 2019 Edinburgh committed to becoming a “net-zero” carbon city by 2030.  

We are now in 2021 and the clock is ticking. With only nine year to net-zero it is vital that we move from commitments to action. Becoming net-zero has to become engrained in all our actions.  

Action will be required at all levels – for us as individuals, the companies we work for and the public sector services that support us.

Moving beyond words and into action

We are still living in midst of a pandemic and all our lives are being disrupted but it is important to look to the future.  

Last year we published a report, Forward, Faster, Together, which outlined how a green recovery could be used to rebuild to a better future for everyone living and working in Edinburgh. As a Commission we are keen to move beyond words to actions.

There are actions we can take immediately with no support – walking more, reducing the amount of meat we eat and turning down the thermostat.  

But many actions required investment and support.  

This is why it is vital that when organisations are setting budget they ensure that they are spending money to support the city to achieve our commitment of becoming a net zero city.  

Time to be bold

Decisions are being made now on day-to-day services which need to be adapted to reflect both the pandemic and the climate emergency.  

There are also longer-term investment decisions being made and it is vital that these result in infrastructure and services that are fully fit for a net-zero society.  

Regulation is tightening on ensuring that buildings are closer to the net-zero standard but this takes time and we should be demanding higher standards immediately to avoid costly retrofit.

Those involved in making budget decisions across the city must have the climate emergency in the forefront on their minds.  

By enacting a green recovery from the pandemic we will see new green jobs being created, skills being learning and a fairer society being created.  

Now is the time to be bold and look to the better future ahead.


By Teresa Bray, Commissioner, Edinburgh Climate Commisison