D& G Climate Hub Allocated £200,000 In Scottish Government Funding For 2024/25

The Scottish Government has announced a £5.5 million funding package for communities to improve resilience in the face of climate change, with £200,000 allocated to the D&G Climate Hub.

The overall funding package will support Scotland’s network of 20 Community Climate Action Hubs in 2024/25.

Across Scotland the Hubs have already supported a range of projects bespoke to their area, including on local energy generation and flood mitigation. The D&G Climate Hub is delivered by the Galloway and Southern Ayrshire Biosphere Partnership, a non-profit organisation which has been working in community, enterprise, environment and climate awareness since southwest Scotland was designated a UNESCO Biosphere in 2012.

The GSAB Partnership recently announced the recruitment of additional Climate Officers to help expand the work of the Hub across Dumfries and Galloway. Plans for the coming year include workshops and engagements with a variety of partner organisations: sharing food growing expertise alongside Propagate, delivering climate education in schools with Crichton Carbon Centre, and teaching biological monitoring skills for community groups with the South West Scotland Environmental Information Centre. The Climate Hub’s full team of four is supported by the wider Biosphere staff, who recently moved into new permanent office space in Newton Stewart.

Cabinet Secretary for Net Zero and Energy Màiri McAllan confirmed the national funding package during a visit to the North East Scotland Climate Action Network (NESCAN) Hub in Aberdeen, one of the original two hubs that successfully piloted the concept in 2021. The Hub for D&G launched in November last year and has already supported over 25 community-led projects with grants ranging between £495 – £1,000, as well as providing training, resources, and facilitation.

Commenting on the announcement of the Scottish Government funding, Ms McAllan said: “Climate action should be locally appropriate and locally driven. Our communities are uniquely placed to shape and drive forward the transition to low carbon and climate resilient living and we want to empower people to take the action in their own communities that’s right for them.

“That is why we are proud to continue to support our hugely successful framework of regional climate hubs, including the D&G Climate Hub, which will provide a vehicle for communities to come together and engage in collective grassroots action.”

The Biosphere’s Community & Education lead, Jenna Cains, heads the D&G Climate Hub. Jenna said: “The first six months of Hub activity have been groundbreaking for this region. Dumfries and Galloway is the third largest local authority area in Scotland by geographical size and has a wide range of climate challenges, many of them specific to rural villages and towns and the special environments which the Galloway and Southern Ayrshire Biosphere Partnership has been working to protect for more than a decade.

“Alongside the challenges are countless opportunities and a readiness for action among local people that is inspiring.

I and the Climate Hub team look forward to supporting community groups as together we continue to widen understanding and build resilience for the long term.”

The D&G Climate Hub welcomes enquiries from community groups and organisations developing ideas for climaterelated projects, and expressions of interest in the next round of seed funding awards which will open in June. Please contact the team via [email protected]. More information about the Hub’s activity including a calendar of upcoming events is available at www.gsabiosphere.org.uk.