Ruth Maguire MSP has raised concerns that proposals for a post-Brexit UK Internal Market could undermine the Scottish Government’s efforts to tackle climate change.

Speaking in the Scottish Parliament in response to a statement on the draft legislation, the SNP MSP highlighted comments by Scottish Environment LINK that it could force the Scottish Government to accept the ‘lowest common denominator’ when the UK Government is negotiating trade deals with countries who will require lower standards following Brexit.

Speaking in response, Cabinet Secretary for the Constitution, Europe and External Affairs, Mike Russell said:

“There are many organisations in Scotland who are very glad that there is a government which is prepared to look at the high standard of environmental regulation whilst in the European Union, and determined to be part of them.

“We know precisely what will happen with the Tory commitment to high standards, it will evaporate. It will evaporate the moment they have the power to move on without restriction.

“We are in a climate emergency, we need to stand up for the type of regulation we need and even stronger regulation, and we need to reject those who are against it.”

Providing further comment, Ruth Maguire said: “I’m grateful that the Scottish Government is showing commitment to working with organisations such as Scottish Environment Link in order to keep pace with European environmental regulations.

“At a time where we face climate catastrophe, efforts to overrule Scottish Government environmental policy laid out in the UK Internal Market legislation must be fully rejected.”

The exchange in Parliament can be viewed in full below: