Scotland's Way Ahead

Scotland’s Way Ahead

Climate change is the defining challenge of our times, and one we have to tackle head on. The decisions we make now about what and how we build will dictate how we travel, heat our homes and power our industries in 2050. The Scotland’s Way Ahead project aims to highlight the benefits of low carbon infrastructure for Scotland, the risks of continuing to invest in high-carbon projects, and identify projects that could be developed in Scotland.

Scroll down to explore the 10 low carbon projects that could forge Scotland's Way Ahead.

Explore the 10 low carbon projects

Decisions we make now will shape Scotland for generations to come. What's the next big project that will shape Scotland's Way Ahead? We've identified ten projects that could bring economic, social and environmental benefits to Scotland, from district heating projects to generating energy from waste water.

Click on the icons below to find out how each project could bring economic, social and environmental benefits to Scotland.

Benefits of low carbon infrastructure

  • Clean air

    Scotland’s push towards renewables has meant 10million tonnes of CO2 have been taken out of the atmosphere: the equivalent of the total emissions of all transport on our roads. Air pollution is linked to poor health; better infrastructure for greener travel such as cycling, walking and public transport could help reduce the estimated 2,000 premature deaths linked to air pollution every year.

  • More jobs

    The renewables industry is responsible for over 11,000 full time jobs in Scotland. Our low carbon economy is expected to support 60,000 jobs across the country by 2020. Investing in low carbon infrastructure can harness Scotland’s potential and boost our economy- for example Scotland has an estimated 25% of Europe’s offshore wind resources and 25% of its tidal energy potential.

  • Cheaper energy

    Almost one million households in Scotland live in fuel poverty. Low carbon heating could lower both emissions and bills, reducing fuel poverty, creating warmer homes and improving health. District heating is one example of low carbon infrastructure that could tackle this. A network serving tower blocks in Aberdeen has reduced typical fuel costs by up to 50% for residents, 70% of whom were living in fuel poverty.

  • Healthier lives

    Infrastructure that encourages people to walk or cycle rather than take the car is likely to reduce the rate of multiple health problems: obesity, chronic diseases caused by physical inactivity, and the effects of air pollution. It could also reduce casualties by improving road safety for pedestrians and cyclists. By reducing energy bills and tackling fuel poverty, low carbon infrastructure could help ensure warmer homes and better health.

Did you know?

If everyone in Scotland drove 5miles a week less, we would save 190,000 tonnes of CO2 every year.

Who's behind this initiative?

The Scotland’s Way Ahead project aims to highlight the benefits of low carbon infrastructure for Scotland, the risks of continuing to invest in high-carbon projects, and identify projects that could be developed in Scotland. It is led by the Low Carbon Infrastructure Task Force.

"Scotland's journey to a low carbon economy must be supported by infrastructure that cuts emissions, creates jobs and helps build a fairer future for all of Scotland. The Low Carbon Infrastructure Task Force is a welcome initiative that I hope will be able to look forward with real ambition and shine a light on the next big infrastructure projects for Scotland. Good luck with the project and I look forward to following the work of the Task Force in the coming months."

Dr Aileen Mcleod MSP
Minister for Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform, Scottish Government

Task Force Members

Did you know?

The renewables industry is responsible for 11,000 jobs in Scotland alone.

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