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03/10/13 09:30

Green for go

Funding for carbon footprint reduction projects continues.

An extra £10.3 million is being made available to help communities across Scotland cut their carbon footprint.

Environment and Climate Change Minister Paul Wheelhouse revealed the money would allow the innovative Climate Challenge Fund (CCF) to continue in 2015/16.

The CCF enables communities to take action to cut carbon for themselves and a further thirty-two projects have been successful with their applications.

Among the applications sharing £3.6 million are:

  • the Cycle to the Moon challenge in Cumbernauld (£242,300) to challenge people within the communities to get on their bikes and ‘cycle to the moon’
  • the Garden Plate project in East Lothian (£64,208) which will help five primary schools cut their carbon emissions by growing local food on allotments and cutting food waste
  • the Lost Garden of Penicuik project (£31,900) to restore the garden as a sustainable food source, reducing carbon emissions by cutting food miles
  • the Lismore Hall Energy project in Argyll and Bute (£25,266) which will insulate and draught-proof the building as well as promote lower carbon travel

During a visit to Edinburgh World Heritage’s Green Heritage Project, a previous recipient of CCF funding, Mr Wheelhouse said:

“We know from the landmark report by the IPCC, published last week, that climate change is a serious threat not only here in Scotland but across the globe, that we are more certain that ever before that it is predominantly caused by mankind, and that we need to work together to limit the impacts of it.

“Our local communities are showing a real desire and willingness to do their bit and work together to look at ways they can cut their own carbon footprint and, in turn, reduce Scotland’s contribution to causing this most critical global challenge.

“The CCF allows communities to gain financial support and come up with inspiring projects to reduce emission and make Scotland a more sustainable place to live. That is why I am so pleased the announce this further funding and continue this unique scheme.

“The Green Heritage Project showcases the multiple benefits of the CCF. It supports local residents to install energy efficiency measures and grow their own food, and the project is well established and delivering good results for the city.

“We’ve also recently extended the terms of the CCF to encourage projects which wish to support climate resilience activity alongside carbon reduction, to apply, where these projects are low carbon and contribute to wider climate action.

Derek Robertson, Chief Executive at independent environmental charity Keep Scotland Beautiful, which manages the Climate Challenge Fund on behalf of the Scottish Government said:

“We welcome the extension of the Climate Challenge Fund funding until March 2016 and urge community groups to apply for Climate Challenge Fund grants of up to £150,000 per year.

“The Climate Challenge Fund has been important in supporting over 600 community groups that have been awarded grants totalling in excess of £52 million. These important projects are enabling community groups and individuals to reduce local carbon emissions whilst also improving, environmentally, their local communities.

“We are delighted to be playing such a key role in engaging communities on climate change. The Climate Challenge Fund is very important to us and is a key part of Keep Scotland Beautiful’s ambition for our country to be clean and green and sustainable today and tomorrow.

“We very much look forward to helping many more community groups with their funding applications and project implementation.”

Adam Wilkinson, Director of Edinburgh World Heritage said:

"We were delighted to be awarded a grant from the Climate Challenge Fund, which has enabled us to build the bridge between communities, their historic places and issues of energy efficiency, helping strengthen the city’s long term sustainability.

“Through the grant we have been able to address a wide range of issues from improving energy efficiency to promoting active travel and establishing community gardens. In particular our project has shown how historic buildings, often regarded as difficult to treat, can be made energy efficient with simple measures.

“Thanks to the CCF funding, we have been able to engage with the residents of the Old and New Towns of all ages, and our project is now viewed by UNESCO as an exemplar for other World Heritage Sites."

Notes to editors

Link to successful applicants: www.scotland.gov.uk/Topics/Environment/climatechange/howyoucanhelp/communities/ClimateChallengeFund/projects/CCF15

For further information on individual projects, please contact Tim Mullens at Keep Scotland Beautiful on 01786 468245.

The CCF has awarded just over £52 million to 612 projects in 444 communities across Scotland since it was introduced in 2008. All applications are assessed by an Independent Grants Panel.

The CCF Ideas Bank enables community groups to access potential project ideas that have been proposed by other organisations who will be able to work in partnership with the community.

The CCF has appointed a Junior Climate Challenge Fund Panel, to assessing applications from young people and support and enable access to the fund by Scotland’s youth, who will be affected the most by climate change.

Further information on all aspects of the Climate Challenge Fund: www.climatechallengefund.org

Guidelines on the new climate resilience projects and the CCF criteria: http://www.keepscotlandbeautiful.org/sustainability-climate-change/climate-challenge-fund/themes/adaptation-and-resilience/

The Green Heritage Project aims to reduce fuel poverty and cut carbon emissions by 600 tonnes of CO2 in the World Heritage Site by the end of March 2015 through offering advice on energy efficiency, creating more historic vegetable gardens and adopting innovative active travel initiatives.