Lorna Jarvie. Sustainable Development Policy Officer, South Ayrshire Council

At our recent meeting we were delighted to welcome Lorna Jarvie to talk about environmental and sustainable issues. She is currently South Ayrshire Council’s Coordinator for Sustainability and Fleet and was I was raised in South Ayrshire and was a former pupil of both Doonfoot Primary School and Belmont Academy. Lorna has been with South Ayrshire for over a decade now and prior to that held a number of posts at South Lanarkshire Council. A geographer by training she holds an MA Geography, MSc Sustainable Rural Development and PGDip Local Government Leadership from the University of Glasgow, University of Aberdeen and Glasgow Caledonian University respectively and also studied Environmental Assessment at Strathclyde University.

To add to this list of achievements, Lorna is also a Member of the Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation as well as the Royal Scottish Geographical Society. I sit on the national steering group of the Sustainable Scotland Network. Her current work role and remit is broad and varied, and includes work on the council’s Sustainable Development and Climate Change Strategy, development of our approach to carbon budgeting, the Provost’s School Footprint Challenge, the green champions network, allotments and food growing, biodiversity and landscape, play, reservoirs, South Ayrshire Council’s Fleet service and Rangers service.

Connecting people with nature is one of the aims of South Ayrshire Council’s service as it is so important for people to gain an understanding and empathy in relation to conservation, biodiversity and climate action.

In June 2019 the Council approved its first which will drive delivery of the Council’s climate change duties over the next 4 years. The SD&CC strategy is underpinned with a cross departmental action plan to deliver mitigation and adaptation measures across the Authority area, putting South Ayrshire Council in the forefront of Scotland’s push towards a more sustainable future.

The strategy has three themes:

  1. Sustainable Council: Reducing the corporate greenhouse gas emissions and improving the wider environment.
  2. Sustainable Environment: Protecting and enhancing the environment while improving the health, well-being and livelihoods of local communities.
  3. Sustainable Community: Supporting local communities to limit greenhouse gas emissions, adapt to climate change impacts and improve their local environment

Lorna mentioned deep decarbonisation which she explained is with Global emissions having soared by two-thirds in the three decades since international climate talks began, a new approach is needed that creates incentives for leading countries and industries to spark transformative technological revolutions.Three main strategies can help countries meet energy needs with zero-carbon emissions: optimize, electrify and decarbonize. On a more local level, she said there is a need to ban straws, helium balloons and be able to switch to more sustainable materials with supply chains.

A worthy vote of thanks was given by Ron Ireland