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Glasgow bids to become UK's first net zero city

The city council and ScottishPower say they will work together towards achieving net zero carbon emissions ahead of Scotland’s 2045 nationwide target.

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Glasgow is starting work on a range of programmes to reach the target
Glasgow is starting work on a range of programmes to reach the target

Glasgow has committed to becoming the first net zero city in the UK ahead of Scotland’s own nationwide 2045 target.

 

The city’s council is working with ScottishPower on a range of programmes to reduce carbon emissions.

 

It has already established the first low emission zone outside of London, while the UK’s biggest onshore wind farm, Whitelee, owned by ScottishPower, sits on the outskirts of the city.

 

Mass EV charging

 

The focus will now turn to other parts of Glasgow’s economy that can be decarbonised such as transport and heating, with mass electric vehicle charging forming a cornerstone of the city’s decarbonisation plans.

 

“Scotland has rightly put itself at the top of the race to become net zero quicker than other places round the world. To succeed, our biggest city has to be the most ambitious and progressive in removing carbon emissions,” said Keith Anderson, chief executive of ScottishPower.

 

“We have a large supply of renewable energy on our doorstep and one of only two low emission zones in action across the UK. Now, we need to invest in the technologies and programmes that transform the rest of Glasgow’s economy and make us net zero before anyone else.”

 

One of the key areas of focus over the next 10 years will be on electric vehicles. Over 70 per cent of Glasgow’s residents live in flats with no personal off-street parking. This creates challenges to install chargers that can easily and regularly be used by residents.

“We have a large supply of renewable energy on our doorstep and one of only two low emission zones in action across the UK"

ScottishPower is planning a charging system that overcomes this challenge and becomes a template for other cities across the UK facing similar problems. This will include workplace and public charging locations where people can charge away from home and in rapid time. Sites for these locations are already being assessed.

 

According to Susan Aitken, Glasgow City Council leader, the city is determined to lead the UK’s “race to zero”.

 

“From the research by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change to the appeals from our classrooms, our streets and civic squares, we know that emissions reduction is the issue of our times,” she added.

 

“We simply have to act now and the Glasgow City Government will develop those partnerships necessary to get to where we simply have to be. We need to be a net zero city. And we need to be the UK’s first net zero city.”

 

Beyond Glasgow, ScottishPower reiterated its call to speed-up the development of onshore wind across the country.

 

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