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Park Authority commits to being ‘Net Zero’ within 4 years

12th March 2021

Scotland has the most ambitious climate legislation in the world and today (Friday 12 March) the Cairngorms National Park Authority (CNPA) board made a bold commitment that the Park Authority will achieve Net Zero emissions by 2025 at the latest.

Meeting virtually the CNPA board laid out a timescale for achieving net zero emissions across the Cairngorms National Park and proposed to lead the way in tackling the climate emergency with three clear commitments:

  • The Park Authority will achieve net zero emissions by 2025
  • The Park Authority aims to achieve zero direct emissions by 2030
  • The Cairngorms National Park aims to achieve net zero emissions by 2045

These targets are in line with the Climate Change (Emissions Reduction Targets) (Scotland) Act 2019, which laid out a commitment for Scotland to have net-zero emissions of all greenhouse gases by 2045. Achieving these goals for the Cairngorms National Park as a whole will require close collaboration with a range of stakeholders, from local residents to businesses, land managers and third-sector organisations, alongside the development of a range of affordable green transport, infrastructure and power solutions.

Xander McDade, Convener of the CNPA, explains: “This year the world will be looking to Scotland as Glasgow hosts the United Nations COP26 climate summit in November. The Cairngorms National Park has a key role to play in the fight to tackle climate change in Scotland through pioneering nature-based solutions, but we are only part of the answer. We will all need to come together to make changes to the way we live, work and enjoy nature. Today’s commitment from the Park Authority is a good start, and we are keen to lead by example to help achieve net zero emissions in the National Park by 2045 at the latest, but to be successful we will have to work in partnership with our communities, businesses and land owners to achieve this.”

Grant Moir, CEO of the CNPA added:”The CNPA has already made good progress in reducing its emissions but we know that there is more to do as we look to get to net zero as an organisation by 2025. The big challenge is to work with people across the National Park to help Scotland deliver on its net-zero targets through peatland restoration, woodland expansion, carbon friendly farming, increasing active travel and many other changes that we will all need to make.  The new National Park Partnership Plan that we are developing this year will allow us to have a conversation with people about how we best achieve our net-zero ambitions for the Park.”

Environment and Climate Change Secretary Roseanna Cunningham said:  “The need to address the global climate emergency has never been greater and we remain wholly committed to ending Scotland’s contribution to climate change by 2045 at the latest.

“I commend the strong and ambitious leadership shown by Cairngorms National Park Authority as it commits to meeting net zero emissions targets, which are central to our green recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The Edinburgh Declaration makes it clear that – together with governments, cities and local authorities across the world – the Scottish Government, and partners such as Cairngorms National Park Authority, are ready to meet the challenge of delivering the post-2020 global biodiversity framework and play a strong role in its implementation.”