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What’s New


On this page, you will find the latest news from Transform Scotland, with the occasional contribution from some of our member groups.

High-carbon roads remain the priority in ‘business as usual’ Infrastructure Investment Plan

12 October 2020

Transform policy officer, Marie Ferdelman, presented to members and supporters on the draft Infrastructure Investment Plan (IIP) for Scotland 2021-22 to 2025-26. You can find the full presentation here and view the video of the presentation here. Marie presented an overview of the transport content in the draft IIP including summarising the low-carbon and high-carbon…

M9 Winchburgh Junction proposals fail to deliver on the priorities of the NTS

08 October 2020

Transform submitted our objection to the M9 Winchburgh Junction proposals to Transport Scotland. Our objection is based on a number of reasons: It fails to deliver on any of the four main priorities in the National Transport Strategy – to reduce inequalities, taking climate action, helping deliver inclusive economic growth, and improving health and wellbeing….

Scotland’s Railway: Decarbonisation and Enhancement

29 September 2020

The Convener of Transform’s Policy Forum, Paul Tetlaw, has written an article for the Rail Professional journal looking at the plans for decarbonising Scotland’s railway. You can read the article in full on the Rail Professional website.

Infrastructure Investment Plan fails to act on Climate Emergency

24 September 2020

Transform Scotland has published its initial views on the Infrastructure Investment Plan. Transform director Colin Howden said: “There are lots of warm words in the Plan about ‘Green Recovery’, ‘Green Jobs’, and ‘Net Zero Carbon Economy’. But as far as we can see there’s not a single new penny in the Plan for low-carbon, sustainable…

September Newsletter — Campaigns Update

24 September 2020

Programme for Government Our focus over the past month has been the 2020-21 Programme for Government (PfG) which was published on 1 September. Our main observation is that whilst the focus on green jobs is laudable, the transport components of the PfG are unimpressive, generally restating commitments made twelve months ago on which progress has…

September Newsletter — Member Profile: Green Action Trust

24 September 2020

Green Action Trust – Scotland’s leading environmental regeneration charity. The Green Action Trust is the trusted delivery partner focussed on environmental and regeneration outcomes for Scotland. We work with a range of private, public and charity partners across Scotland to turn ideas into tangible change, to build more sustainable communities and a greener country. We…

Infrastructure Investment Plan a key test for tackling Climate Emergency

24 September 2020

Transform Scotland’s external affairs manager Jess Pepper writes: Transform Scotland is concerned that tackling the Climate Emergency – which is further exacerbating inequalities and threatening our future – with a just, green recovery may be losing emphasis in Scottish Government planning and budgets in relation to transport. The Infrastructure Investment Plan (to be published this…

Infrastructure Investment Plan needs to deliver low-carbon transformation

24 September 2020

Transform Scotland has issued a parliamentary briefing ahead of this afternoon’s Ministerial Statement on the new Draft Infrastructure Investment Plan. Transform director Colin Howden said: “The current Infrastructure Investment Plan is overwhelmingly skewed to high-carbon transport, with the £600m on low-carbon investment dwarfed by £6.4bn on high-carbon spend. “In the context of the Climate Emergency,…

AEF & Transform oppose further financial support for the aviation sector without action to tackle emissions

16 September 2020

The Aviation Environment Federation (AEF) & Transform Scotland have today jointly briefed the Scottish Parliament ahead of this afternoon’s Scottish Labour Party debate on aviation. Transform director Colin Howden said: “There is merit in some of the content of the Labour motion being presented in the Parliament this afternoon, including the references to climate and…

Programme for Government: helpful policy commitments, but spectacularly vague on spending

15 September 2020

Transform Director, Colin Howden, presented to the Transform members on the 2020-21 Scottish Government Programme for Government (PfG) on Thursday 10 September. Colin began by summarising the transport content in the PfG into eight categories: Reducing the need to travel / Digital connectivity 20-minute neighbourhoods Active Travel etc. Bus priority Low Emission Zones etc. Decarbonisation…

Commitment to green jobs will be found in Infrastructure Investment Plan spending priorities

01 September 2020

Commenting on this afternoon’s Programme for Government announcement, Transform director Colin Howden said: “The focus on green jobs is laudable, and it is important that we see investment in the supply chain for zero emission public transport where critical green jobs are under threat. “In this Climate Emergency, and to tackle inequalities, Scotland needs to…

August Newsletter — Ramblers Scotland Member Profile

20 August 2020

Ramblers Scotland is a membership organisation and charity with a grassroots network of 54 local groups who normally run 3,500 group walks a year, organised and led by experienced volunteers. As the representative body for walkers in Scotland and a governing body of sport, we work to champion walking, protect and promote access rights and…

August Newsletter — Tackling a Crisis

20 August 2020

Well that was a short summer! The return of the Scottish Parliament last week from its abbreviated summer recess means that the campaigning autumn season is again open. Of course, the Parliament never really went away, with meetings held at least once a week since the end of June. Tackling a crisis  All of the…

August Newsletter — Campaigns Update

20 August 2020

Corona Recovery Our early summer focus was on preparing a series of reports to influence  Corona Recovery. We acted quickly to give sustainable transport a strong voice in the rapidly-evolving coronavirus situation: Our ‘Just Recovery’ report looked at the social justice impacts of the lockdown, a topic that had received minimal attention from the media…

Candidates wanted for Chair of Transform’s Board of Directors

13 August 2020

Transform Scotland is the national alliance for sustainable transport. We campaign for a zero carbon transport network in which walking, cycling and public transport are the most attractive and affordable options. We are a registered charity, politically independent and strictly science-based. We are now seeking a new Chair for our board of directors to lead…

Priorities for a Green Recovery: evidence submitted to Finance Committee on Scottish Budget

07 August 2020

We’ve today submitted our evidence paper on Pre-Budget Scrutiny to the Scottish Parliament’s Finance and Constitution Committee in response to its call for views. Transform director Colin Howden said: “The Scottish Budget’s current spending priorities are not consistent with Ministers’ assertions that they are taking the Climate Emergency seriously. Just two of the high-carbon road…

Coronavirus brings opportunities for car-free tourism

04 August 2020

The Coronavirus pandemic has encouraged many of us to choose to holiday at home this summer. Indeed, on 23 June the First Minister said: “I will be delighted to encourage people to have staycations in Scotland and in all the beautiful parts of our country.” [1] The First Minister reiterated this sentiment on 28 July…

Just Transition Commission: Strong welcome for support for bus in Scotland

30 July 2020

Transform Scotland has strongly welcomed today’s advice from the Just Transition Commission to Scottish Ministers to ‘Back buses and support the supply chain’ as part of a just, green recovery. Jess Pepper, external affairs manager for Transform Scotland said: “We are glad to see the Commission urge action on existing Government commitments, as progress will…

Transform Consulting ‘Access to Bikes’ research for Cycling Scotland published

29 July 2020

Cycling Scotland have published the ‘Access to Bikes Schemes in Scotland’ research that was prepared by our social enterprise consultancy, Transform Consulting. As reported in Cycling Scotland’s news release, the report finds: At least 200 organisations run access to bike schemes in Scotland including pool bike fleets, bike loans for events, public bike hire, cycle…

Rail electrification vision welcomed, but action needed by 2030 not 2035

28 July 2020

Transform Scotland has welcomed the publication of the Rail Services Decarbonisation Action Plan, but expressed the need for greater urgency, with much of the action on electrification and decarbonisation required by 2030 rather than 2035. Transform Scotland rail spokesperson Paul Tetlaw said “We welcome publication of the Action Plan and the clear commitment that Scotland’s…

Job cuts at ADL would be a major setback for a Green Recovery in Scotland

27 July 2020

Commenting on today’s announcement by Alexander Dennis Limited (ADL) of a major restructuring that could lead to job cuts, Transform Scotland director Colin Howden commented: “Job cuts at ADL’s Falkirk plant would represent a major setback for the prospects for a Green Recovery in Scotland. “ADL is one of the few outstanding examples where Scotland…

Welcome for recommendation for independent advisory body to government on infrastructure investment

27 July 2020

Transform Scotland’s director Colin Howden has made some initial observations regarding today’s publication of the Infrastructure Commission for Scotland’s report ‘Phase 2: Delivery Findings Report — A blueprint for Scotland’: “We welcome this new report from the Infrastructure Commission. As noted in today’s report, there certainly needs to be progress made in implementing many of…

Clear and consistent advice required for rebuilding public transport patronage

14 July 2020

Large parts of society are reopening — including the tourism, hospitality, and leisure sectors — as lockdown is gradually lifted in Scotland. This will drive the increased use of public transport, as has been accepted this week by Scottish transport minister Michael Matheson.  Yet as reported by Transport Focus in their UK-wide review, there needs…

Ramblers & Transform team up on Just Transition to make case for active travel

03 July 2020

Transform has published the response it has submitted to the Just Transition Commission jointly with Ramblers Scotland. Our joint submission submission calls for: (1) Rapid expansion of active travel infrastructure (2) Rapid development of paths for leisure and recreation (3) Investment in transition skills training and capacity building for transport planners and construction staff (4)…

Sustainable travel and homeworking key to a fair, low-carbon Corona Recovery

29 June 2020

We have today submitted our evidence to the Economy, Energy and Fair Work Committee’s inquiry into the impact of COVID-19 on businesses, workers and the economy in Scotland. The economic damage of the Corona Crisis has increased calls for public spending on large infrastructure projects in order to provide an economic stimulus. Given the ongoing…