Community groups win £1½m Climate Challenge funding boost

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Community groups across Scotland that are taking action against the damaging impacts of climate change are to benefit from an extra £1.5 million.

The money will bolster the Climate Challenge Fund (CCF), enabling more carbon-cutting projects with a local focus to get underway.

The cash boost, which takes the total budget for 2014-15 to £11.8 million, was announced alongside confirmation of the latest tranche of successful CCF projects, including the first Junior Climate Challenge Fund awards, by Environment Minister Paul Wheelhouse.

Among the 18 recipients across Scotland sharing £1.9 million are:

  • Room to Roam Green Travel Hub, Aberdeenshire (£171,327): This project aims to reduce car use and carbon emissions in and around Huntly by developing a car club, e-bike rental scheme as well as promoting public transport alternatives to the car.

  • Carbon Crib, North Ayrshire (£58,764): This Junior Climate Challenge Fund project sets out to transform an area of derelict land in Beith into a food growing space; providing skills development opportunities for local young people while decreasing carbon emissions.

  • Greener Living, Coupar Angus, Perthshire (£158,728): This initiative, run by Forward Coupar Angus will help the community tackle climate change by working with local farmers to sell produce as well as providing workshops and space for residents to grow their own food. Greener travel options will also be created through a car club, bike festival and cycle training.

  • Greenproofing the Kyle Centre, Highlands (£67,545): This project, run by North Coast Connection, aims to make the Kyle Centre in Tongue more energy efficient; decreasing both carbon emissions and fuel bills while helping the community learn more about how to do the same in their own home.

  • Leith Community Food Project, Edinburgh (£98,650). Run by Leith Community Crops in Pots, this initiative will help locals grow their own food at sites including Leith Primary School, Stanwell Nursery and Dr Bell’s Family Centre.

Wheelhouse said: “We know from the landmark report published by the IPCC last week that climate change is a serious threat not only here in Scotland but across the globe.

“It’s great that so many communities around Scotland are showing real desire and commitment to making a difference and I’m delighted to confirm funding for a further 18 new, diverse range of projects through our Climate Challenge Fund.

“Each will contribute to making Scotland a more sustainable place to live and that’s why I’m so pleased to announce the £1.5 million extra funding for future projects.

David Gunn, Climate Challenge Fund manager, Keep Scotland Beautiful, said: “We congratulate the 18 community group projects awarded Climate Challenge Fund grants in this latest round of funding and are delighted to see the awards include three Junior Climate Challenge Fund projects led by young people. We look forward to working with all the groups in the implementation of their projects.”

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