Our response to the draft Energy Strategy
APRS has responded to the Scottish Government consultation on their Draft Energy Strategy and Just Transition Plan. This was very important to do as it lays out the longer term vision, direction and actions for energy infrastructure over the next decade.
Our main concern was that landscape was not mentioned at all within the draft strategy. We laid out, in our response, the importance of landscape to Scotland’s communities, culture and economy and that it is vital to bear this in mind when planning energy infrastructure and the just transition.
A very brief summary of our points were:
- A better recognition of landscape and the potential impacts on it and possible mitigations within the plan.
- A stronger emphasis on energy reduction and support for a Circular Economy as a key policy response
- A clearer commitment to strategic, planned approach to energy infrastructure.
- A recognition that renewable expansion is not without negative consequences and the need for efforts to minimise impacts including those on communities and the environment and landscape, both on an individual development scale and collectively.
- A more just and robust mechanism for community contributions and a much stronger support for community generation.
- A commitment to securing net-positive benefits for biodiversity and recreation with respect to new developments and upgrades.
- Additionally, we would encourage you to consider some wider informal engagement perhaps through a series of workshops to establish good dialogue and to foster greater understanding and partnership on some of these issues.