Scotland politics

Week ahead at Holyrood: Tackling the climate emergency

Climate protest in Edinburgh Image copyright Getty Images

Climate change remains at the top of the agenda at Holyrood as it is set to be discussed multiple times this week.

The environment secretary is to make a statement about Scotland's response to the climate emergency.

Roseanna Cunningham has already confirmed emissions targets will rise, the scrapping of air tax cuts and the introduction of a bottle and can deposit return scheme.

More detail on the targets will be outlined on Tuesday afternoon.

In the morning, the Committee on Climate Change will be discussing its most recent advice with the environment committee.

Ms Cunningham has lodged an amendment to the Climate Change Bill to introduce a net-zero emissions target for 2045 on the back of this advice.

Further amendments will also see tougher interim targets.

What else is happening this week?

Tuesday - sheep farming support

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A second ministerial statement is also scheduled for Tuesday afternoon.

Rural Economy Secretary Fergus Ewing will make an announcement regarding sheep farming support.

There have been some concerns about what will replace the subsidy paid to farmers after the UK has left the European Union.

The UK government is currently reviewing the distribution of farm funding, with conclusions expected ahead of its spending review later this year.

After this the Scottish government will lead a debate on the "place principle", which calls for services to work together in their communities to improve their impact.

The evening member's debate will be led by SNP MSP Jenny Gilruth on Home-Start Glenrothes' 21st anniversary.

Wednesday - Michael Gove

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The environment theme will continue into Wednesday morning as Michael Gove is scheduled to speak to two Holyrood committees.

First, the UK environment secretary will speak about the impact of Brexit with the environment committee.

Topics to be covered include any risks associated with Brexit, plans for UK common frameworks and new powers to come to the Scottish parliament.

After that, Mr Gove will be quizzed by the rural committee, also on Brexit.

The focus here will be agriculture, fisheries and forestry.

The Lib Dems have the floor in the afternoon, choosing to split their debate time between health and education.

The topic of the first is yet to be confirmed, though the party did back calls last week for a full debate about the NHS Highland bullying claims.

The education debate will be on testing in schools after the party revealed thousands of P1 literacy and numeracy tests had taken place since September, despite a vote to halt them in the Scottish parliament.

These debates will be bookended by rural and transport portfolio questions, and a debate on foster care fortnight led by Labour MSP Kezia Dugdale.

Thursday - Brexit, food and drink

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Image caption Salmon is on of Scotland's top exports

Thursday's debate will be about the impact of Brexit on Scotland's food and drink sector.

Several stakeholders have warned about the knock-on effect of changes to imports and exports in recent month.

Food and drink is one of the biggest export sectors to the EU, meaning it may also be most vulnerable to new barriers to trade.

Before this, Nicola Sturgeon will face first minister's questions from noon, Tory MSP Alexander Stewart will highlight Community Pharmacy Scotland and justice ministers will be quizzed at portfolio questions.