Tha a bhith carbon cothromach furasta far nach eil daoine, le Murray MacLeoid

Tha e furasta a thuigs' carson as dòcha a thaghadh Riaghaltas na h-Alba sia eileanan beaga airson plana a chur air chois gan dh’ionnsaigh a bhith carbon cothromach ro 2040.

[English-language version below]

Ann an suidheachadh eileanach dhen t-seòrsa sin, tha na buidhnean mar-thà eòlach air a bhith ag obair faisg air a chèile, agus air an roinn phrìobhaidich cuideachd.

Sign up to our Opinion newsletter

Mar sin dheth, tha e cus nas fhasa rudeigin a chur air chois ann an dòigh a tha co-òrdanaichte.

‘S e an t-amas le seo ‘s gun tig seòrsa de dh’eisimpleir a chruthachadh dhan chòrr dhen dùthaich.

Ach a’ leanntainn nan targaidean mar a tha iad an-dràsta, ‘s e eisimpleir dha-rìribh mìorbhaileach a dh’fheumas a bhith ann, bhon a tha an targaid airson na dùthcha air fad a bhith carbon cothromach a’ tighinn dìreach còig bliadhna às dèidh nan eilean.

Ged a shaoileas sinn g’ eil ùine fhada ann am fichead bliadhna, nuair a smaoinicheas thu air na tha ri dheànamh, thèid e seachad mas seall thu riut fhèin.

Chaidh Barraigh, Yell, Hoy, Ratharsair, Ìle agus Cumaradh a thaghadh agus a dh’aona-ghnothach air sgàth ‘s g’ eil iad a’ tighinn fo ùghdarras diofar chomhairlean – Na h-Eileanan an Iar, Sealltainn, Arcaibh, a’ Ghàidhealtachd, Earra-Ghàidheal is Siorrachd Àir a Tuath.

Tha Barraigh am measg nan eilean a chaidh a thaghadh airson a’ phròiseact.

Dè a-rèist am plana airson nan eileanan seo a dhèanamh carbon cothromach ann an deugachadh a bhliadhnachan eile?

Read More

Read More
Tha Boris a-nis a’ deànamh cron air a’ phàrtaidh aige, le Murray MacLeòid

Uill, deagh cheist, bho cho fad ‘s a chithear, chan eil gnìomhan cruaidh sam bith air an cur sìos ma choinneimh.

A’ cur air chois a' phlana airson nan sia eileanan sa Phàrlamaid Dimàirt, thuirt Màiri Gougeon, ministear nan cùisean dùthchail agus nan eilean, gu bheil na sgìrean eileanach “air thoiseach a thaobh na slighe gu carbon neoini” agus gum bi iad nan eisimpleir dha sgìrean eile.

Ach, nuair a thig e gu dè dha-rìribh a bhios a’ tachairt fon phlana, cha tuirt i ach gum bi na h-ùghdarrasan “ag obair gu dlùth leis na coimhearsnachdan airson gluasad gu carbon neoini ann an dòigh a tha cothromach”, agus cuideachd gun innis iad na dh’ionnsaicheas iad dha càch.

Tha seo a’ togail ceist eile: dè as coireach nach eil seo a’ tachairt mar-thà agus an uimhir a dh’ìmpidh air cùisean na h-àrainneachd. Mura h-eil, carson nach eil? ‘S dòcha gum biodh an ùine na b’ fheàrr a chaitheamah air fuasgladh fhaighinn air sin.

Chaidh na h-eileanan a thaghadh agus iad cho mòr fo sgleò atharrachadh na sìde, le ìrean na mara ag èirigh agus an aimsir a’ fàs nas èiginniche.

Ach, tha iad cuideachd a’ fulang ri linn rud eile aig nach eil cus buntannais ri truailleadh na h-àrainneachd: crìonadh sluaigh, gu h-àraidh nam measg aig aois obrach, rud a tha air a dheànamh nas miosa le seirbhisean air an gluasad chun a’ mheadhain agus barrachd is barrachd airson fuireach sna bailtean mòra.

Anns an deasbad anns a’ Phàrlamaid Dimàirt, dh’iarr ball-pàrlamaid Arcaibh Liam MacArtair an t-airgead a thathas a’ cosg air seo a chur gu bhith a’ leasachadh sheirbheisean a’ bhann-leathainn agus gach dachaigh anns na h-eileanan seo a dhìon ann an dòigh ’s nach fheumar cus connaidh a chleachdadh airson an cumail blàth – dà rud a bhiodh na chuideachadh mòr ann an a bhith a' cumail daoine annta.

Bhon gu cinnteach tha aon nì fìor, tha e furasta gu leòr targaidean carbon cothromach a chur ma choinneimh àite a tha na fhàsach.

English-language version

On one level, the announcement by the Scottish Government of a plan that involves six small islands working towards “net zero” by 2040 makes a good deal of sense and is welcome.

Within an island context, you have an existing dynamic whereby organisations, including the private sector, will already be working closely together, indeed often overlapping. So the prospects of a coordinated approach are far greater.

The intention clearly is for this blueprint to carbon Nirvana to offer some kind of template going forward, but if the chronology of targets is to be followed, then it’s going to have to be one heck of an effective prototype, with the country due to reach net-zero just five years after the islands’ deadline.

Barra, Yell, Hoy, Raasay, Islay and Cumbrae have been chosen and all lie within different local authority areas – Western Isles, Shetland, Orkney, Highland, Argyll and North Ayrshire respectively.

So what is the great plan that will achieve the laudable ambition for the islands? That, unfortunately, is all a bit vague, because as it turns out, it’s not so much a case of the devil being in the detail, but the complete absence of any detail at all.

Announcing the six-island plan during a debate in Parliament on Tuesday, Rural Affairs and Islands Secretary Mairi Gougeon said that islands were “in the vanguard of innovation, leading the way in the journey to net zero”.

But when it comes to definitive action on what will be done under the plan, she simply said they will be “working closely with communities to move towards net zero in a fair and just way” and will “share good practices and learnings” with all other Scottish islands.

Which begs a different question: If this hasn’t been happening already, given the clear environmental imperative on carbon reduction across all aspects of our lives, then why on Earth not? Maybe the time would be best spent on addressing that.

As Ms Gougeon alluded to, part of the reason the islands were chosen was because they are in the frontline of climate change consequences, exposed to rising seas and more extreme weather patterns.

But they also suffer from something else unrelated: chronic depopulation, particularly among the working age group, exacerbated by a general trend towards centralisation and a population drift towards urban living.

During the debate, Orkney MSP Liam MacArthur suggested that the money be better spent on improving broadband provision and ensuring houses are properly insulated in these communities – two crucial factors which might actually convince more of the population to stay in these “vanguard” locations.

As Mr MacArthur's more practical intervention implies, a net-zero carbon target is easy to achieve where there is next to zero human activity.

 0 comments

Want to join the conversation? Please or to comment on this article.