Speaking at an environmental NGO event in Battleby, Perthshire, Environment Secretary Roseanna Cunningham, MSP, said: “The quality of our natural environment is critical to our success as a nation.
“We trade internationally on our reputation as a clean, green country, with an excellent record for protecting our natural environment. However, this is now under threat.
“Brexit, and specifically the UK Government’s proposed approach to Brexit, represents a significant potential threat to our natural environment and climate change ambitions, which is why we have always been clear that remaining within the EU is the best option for our future.
“The policies of the European Union have driven up environmental standards, supported by sound and important ideals such as the ‘polluter pays’ principle that are fundamental to a fair and equitable approach – indeed around 80% of our environmental legislation is founded in EU law.
“Within the EU, we have been able to set ambitious standards and provide leadership on environmental issues that are important to us.
“My ambition is to carry through the main principles of EU law as we continue to increase our environmental ambitions. However, to achieve this, we may need to update legislation, which is directly threatened by the UK Government’s proposed EU (Withdrawal) Bill.
“I will not accept any limits to Scotland’s powers over environmental quality and standards. Protecting devolution will allow us to drive forward our ambitious work to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, enhance environmental standards and create a cleaner, greener Scotland.”
9 Oct 2017