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1 February 2022 | Finance

CONSULTATION RESPONSE: Scottish Aviation Strategy


SCDI calls for an integrated and sustainable Aviation Strategy to support Scotland’s recovery and low carbon future

We were delighted to have the opportunity to comment on Transport Scotland’s consultation on a new Aviation Strategy for Scotland.

SCDI is proud to be making the voice of our members heard at the heart of government.

Our response builds on our earlier work with our members around a sustainable recovery in Scotland including our Manifesto for Clean Growth and our Economic Blueprint – Making a good living and  – where we have highlighted the importance of developing a sustainable and low carbon aviation sector to Scotland – and in our Rural Commission which emphasised the critical nature of reliable transport links for Scotland’s rural communities.

Our response calls on Transport Scotland and the Scottish Government to:

  • Ensure Scotland is at the forefront of Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) by proactively developing plans to develop two SAF hubs at St Fergus and Grangemouth, working with the UK government to ensure Scotland is at the heart of its SAF plans.
  • Review the needs of the sector over the coming decade and ensure that sufficient capital funding is allocated to support the necessary infrastructure required at Scotland’s airports to support the move to sustainable fuels or other technologies including batteries and hydrogen.
  • Develop an upskilling plan, building on the work commenced under the National Transition Training Fund, of those working in the aviation sector to in new technologies, fuel and aircraft.
  • Develop a new Air Route Development Fund to enable Scottish airports to compete effectively in what has become an even more competitive market for new route slots. Revisit and introduce an Airport Departure Tax at a reduced level, ring fencing revenues to support innovation in the aviation sector.
  • Work as closely as possible with the CAA and UKRI on the Future of Flight challenge which includes investment in innovation in sub-regional electric or hybrid passenger aircraft.
  • Explicitly include sustainable surface transport links to Scotland’s airports in the strategy and related infrastructure investment plan.
  • Recognise the opportunity that Scotland’s rural areas can play in our future prosperity and work towards a route network and operating models that can support the some or greater levels of connectivity, testing and developing new models where required to support this.
  • Work with the UK Government and HIAL to guarantee connections between the Highlands and Islands and international hubs, including finding a way to ensure that Inverness Airport has access to London Heathrow with a minimum frequency of two services per day to be viable for domestic and business travel.

You can download the full response below.