THE Scottish Government is being urged not “water down” its climate commitments after an independent report found its plans to reach net zero were no longer credible.

Last week, the UK’s climate watchdog – the Climate Change Committee (CCC) – said Scotland’s goal of cutting harmful emissions by 75% by 2030 would require a large acceleration of reductions in most sectors.

As such, it deemed the plans “beyond what is credible” and said there remained “no comprehensive delivery strategy for meeting future emissions targets”.

Speaking at a briefing event organised by Scottish Environment LINK and Stop Climate Chaos Scotland on Wednesday morning, the former director of Friends of the Earth Scotland, Dr Richard Dixon, warned ministers against weakening the country’s climate ambition’s in the wake of the CCC’s report.

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“Scotland wants to be seen as a leader on climate change. Setting ambitious targets is important – but a lack of action is now undermining the government’s legal targets and its international credibility,” he said.

“With the world's climate now changing even faster than scientists predicted, this is a time where we need greater leadership and higher levels of ambition.

“Those in public life who argue that it is too hard to decarbonise are out of step with public opinion and ignorant of the scientific reality.

“We are already starting to suffer the impacts of climate change – but, if we act, we can still avoid the worst consequences.

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“It would be an enormous mistake to water down our climate ambition or to further delay critical action, failing current and future generations both in Scotland and around the world.”

The Scottish Government delayed the publication of its climate change plan last year, stating that the UK Government’s rollback on green policies had implications for Scotland.

It comes after the CCC warned that Scotland was losing its lead over the rest of the UK when it comes to climate policies, with a report stating that progress on cutting fossil fuel emissions had “largely stalled” in recent years.