The SNP parliamentary party at Westminster last night put down amendments to the Brexit bill to stop the Brit-Govt from grabbing powers of energy (and other) matters instead of devolving them to the Scottish parliament when the UK leaves the EU-bloc.
The amendments have been proposed jointly by the Scottish and Welsh governments and have wide cross-party support.
The UK government is currently proposing to take powers in already devolved areas such as agriculture, environment, energy and fisheries into their own hands as part of their hard Brexit plans, rather than transferring them to the devolved administrations.
This will mean that a Brit-Gov at Westminster – instead of a Scot-Govt in Holyrood – will set environment and climate-change targets AFTER Brexit.
See also: –
Alex Salmond, former First Minister of Scotland, to speak at keynote Renewables AFTER Brexit energy conference (Dundee, 1 Dec 2017)
The amendments, that have won support from across the political spectrum, will ensure no change to the devolution settlements for Scotland and Wales without the consent of ministers in devolved administrations and that consent must be given by Scottish Ministers on making any regulations on Scottish devolved matters. They will aim to ensure and safeguard devolution.
Stephen Gethins, MP – the SNP’s International Affairs and EU spokesman in the Westminster Parliament – said that the amendments laid down on the EU Withdrawal Bill are a ‘real chance to protect devolution from the Tory Brexit power grab.’
Meanwhile, the European Commission in Brussels is preparing an update of its low-carbon economy roadmap for 2050, acknowledging that the bloc’s current target of cutting greenhouse gas emissions at least 80% by mid-century are insufficient.
In calling for more ambition in EU climate targets, European lawmakers are exerting more political pressure as a number of important pieces of legislation make their way through various parts of the Brussels policymaking machine.
Next week, EU environment ministers are expected to agree on a joint position on the Effort Sharing Regulation (ESR), which sets national binding targets on reducing emissions from various sectors that make up 60% of the EU’s greenhouse gas emissions.
Its piece of sister-legislation, the Emissions Trading System (ETS) is further along the pipeline and trilateral talks between the EU institutions are currently ongoing, with an ambitious reform of the scheme underway.
Energy UK – the trade association for the Big Six (and other gas and electricity suppliers) announced last month that its members want Britain to remain in EU Emission Trading Scheme despite Brexit.
6 Oct 2017