Low carbon plans set out

PLANS for a low-carbon economy in the Borders has been set out in a draft paper produced by Scottish Borders Council.

The low carbon economic strategy includes suggestions for projects and schemes that could be undertaken as part of a Borders-wide action plan.

A report on the draft strategy was given to a meeting of 
the full council last week by 
Rob Dickson, the council’s director of environment and infrastructure.

Mr Dickson said it was vital that the council, local communities and businesses took advantage of the opportunities provided by renewable energy, including the economic benefits.

In his report Mr Dickson said: “The adoption and implementation of a low carbon economic strategy will have a positive effect on carbon management, helping organisations, businesses, community groups and individuals to reduce their carbon footprint.”

It is highlighted in the draft strategy that almost a third of all households in the Scottish Borders are in fuel poverty, and only a third of private homes in the Borders have a good energy efficiency rating.

Councillor Stuart Bell, executive member for economic development, welcomed the draft strategy, adding: “It translates opportunities into specific actions.”

Councillor Alastair Cranston said: “There is a huge opportunity for businesses in the Borders to get involved in energy efficiency.”

The strategy is to be 
widely consulted upon 
during the coming months, 
with a final version set to be approved by the council in 

Last week it was revealed by the Energy Saving Trust that less than a quarter of people in the south of Scotland had considered installing or have already fitted money-saving low-carbon upgrades to their homes, 
such as solar panels or wind turbines.