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Environment and Climate Change (European Union Referendum)

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament on 27th October 2016.

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Photo of Maurice Golden Maurice Golden Conservative

Norway did not need the EU to establish that goal for it; it did it for itself. The SNP often likes to cite Norway as a model for Scotland to look up to, and here I agree with the SNP. The Scottish Government can seize the opportunity that Brexit gives us to go above and beyond when it comes to the environment.

I call on the Scottish Government to focus on the day job; set aside its obsession with a divisive second independence referendum and the blame game; stop the naval gazing, inverse counterfactual history and the quantum reality postulation; and focus on the job at hand of protecting and enhancing Scotland’s environment.

I move amendment S5M-02125.1, to leave out from “ensured progress” to end and insert:

“at times aided progress on a wide range of environmental issues in Scotland and continues to underpin vital environmental protection in certain areas, along with a variety of international organisations and nations; recognises the importance of the EU, the UK and non-EU states in securing collective action and progress on climate change; further recognises that a healthy environment supports prosperity and allows the promotion of Scottish produce and tourism around the world; notes that the value of the natural environment to the people of Scotland will be recognised by the UK Government in any future trade negotiations; welcomes that the Scottish Ministers will pass on, in full, the EU funding guaranteed by the UK Government so far, which is vital to protecting, maintaining and enhancing the natural environment; believes that Scotland must not only lead but also deliver on climate change and recognises the positive impact that being part of the UK has had on climate change in Scotland; calls on the Scottish Government to recognise that much decision-making in this portfolio is already in the competence of the Parliament, and further calls on the Scottish Government to participate fully in a positive manner in all UK negotiations in light of the invitation from the UK Government.”