Council switches on to hybrid vehicles - The Oban Times
Argyll and Bute Council has just taken delivery of 20 new cars as part of its new green transport fleet. The cars are Ultra Low Emission Vehicles, partially funded by the Scottish Government, and will replace older cars and vans now to be removed.
Green recovery: Why resilience through the lens of sustainability is the only strategy
The blog highlighted below has been written by Lord Deben, The Rt Hon. John Gummer for the publication edie. edie are an industry-leading, purpose-driven business media brand that empowers sustainability, energy and environmental professionals of all levels to make business more sustainable through award-winning content and events.
While this blog has been written with the private sector in mind, I felt that it was equally applicable to any third sector organisation and possibly more relevant to social enterprises as we move through Covid-19 Recovery stage. I hope that you will find this blog to be both thought provoking and informative.
Following last week’s announcement by the First Minister that Scotland would begin moving into Phases 2 and 3 of the routemap out of lockdown, further indicative dates for changes within this phase have been announced this week. Some of these changes are being brought forward earlier than had been originally expected.
The indicative dates announced this week are:
Travel distance restriction relaxed
Self-catering accommodation and second homes (without shared facilities) permitted
Outdoor hospitality (subject to physical distancing rules and public health advice)
People can meet in extended groups outdoors (with physical distancing)
Households can meet indoors with up to a maximum of two other households (with physical distancing)
Organised outdoor contact sports can resume for children and young people (subject to guidance)
Non-essential shops inside shopping centres can re-open (following guidance and with physical distancing)
All holiday accommodation permitted (following relevant guidance)
Indoor hospitality (subject to physical distancing rules and public health advice.
This shows that further good progress is being made on suppressing the virus and will be welcome news to many. At the same time, the shorter timescales for some of these stages does also present challenges in terms of reopening planning. National Parks Authority are currently reviewing their plans for reopening National Park sites and facilities and will provide more detail on timings next week.
While detailed planning is already underway for the reopening of National Park sites and facilities, they are reviewing these plans in light of these new dates.
National Parks Authority priority for reopening will continue to be car parks and toilets first as these are the facilities that support the majority of visitors and a wide range of visitors. They are working closely with their partners to coordinate timings for this with the aim of opening all car parks and toilets in key visitor hotspots by Friday 3rd July in line with the lifting of travel restrictions.
They are also carrying out detailed risk assessments to ensure they have appropriate safety measures in place where necessary before these facilities open. They are also considering options for additional temporary provision of toilets in some locations.
When these facilities do open, they will not operate as they did before with reduced capacity and safety measures in place. This is a message that will be clearly communicated to visitors once the five mile guidance on travel is lifted.
They will also focus their messaging to visitors on the importance of planning ahead, not going to crowded places and responsible behaviour, especially when it comes to litter, when they do come to the National Park.
National Park Authority are grateful to communities within the National Park who feedback important information to them about issues or visitor pressures that are felt on the ground. They are sharing information with key partners as part of their National Park Safe Recovery Working Group to address these wherever possible. Please continue to send them information on issues arising to firstname.lastname@example.org for monitoring.
More information on their response to the lockdown changes and updated reopening plans will be shared and discussed with community representative groups at a meeting next week as well as with businesses and other key stakeholder groups. They welcome your support in sharing these updates locally.
Scottish Government releases independent report on a Robust, Resilient Wellbeing Economy for Scotland
Report from the independent Advisory Group established by the Scottish Government to advise on Scotland’s economic recovery in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Report published 22nd June, 2020 This report details the findings of the independent Advisory Group on Economic Recovery which was established by the Scottish Government in April 2020 to provide expert advice on supporting the different regions and sectors of Scotland’s economy to recover from the impacts of Covid-19. Published on 22 June the report contains a series of recommendations directed at both the Scottish Government and other actors in Scotland’s economy identifying interventions to support Scotland’s economic recovery and facilitate the transition towards a greener, fairer and more inclusive economy with wellbeing at its heart. The recommendations were informed by widespread engagement with the business community, trade unions, the third sector and wider civil society amongst others. A selection of these submissions can be found at the Advisory Group on Economic Recovery’s webpage. All of the submissions where permission has been granted for these to be published will follow in July.
Scottish Government to delay publication of Climate Change Plan
Publication to be delayed due to coronavirus outbreak. Climate Change Secretary Roseanna Cunningham has announced that the Scottish Government will not be publishing the Climate Change Plan update at the end of April. The decision has been taken in light of the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. Ms Cunningham said: “The Scottish Government is fully committed to tackling the global climate emergency and to updating the Climate Change Plan to reflect our ambitious net zero targets. “However, in face of the unprecedented health and economic implications of the COVID-19 pandemic we have come to the view that publishing the Climate Change Plan update by the end of April is no longer feasible or appropriate. This does not mean that work on our ambitious plan will pause – indeed it will continue – but it is recognition that we are operating in a changed landscape. “It is vitally important that our actions in the coming weeks and months, even those in response to other major global issues such as climate change, reflect the worldwide situation and support our national response. “I have written to the Committee on Climate Change to request its independent expert advice on the best way forward in these unprecedented circumstances and how the Climate Change update can contribute, in due course, to a green recovery for Scotland.”
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