Bill to 'decarbonise' Scots Procurator Fiscal office by fitting heat pumps jumps to £3.5mil

Published date03 December 2023
Publication titleDaily Record, The / Sunday Mail: Web Edition Articles (Scotland)
The Crown Office announced in August it was closing its procurator fiscal’s base in Elgin, Aberdeenshire, to upgrade insulation and fit an electric heating system at a cost of £2.2million. But we can reveal the estimated price of the project – designed to showcase the viability of retrofitting Victorian properties to become more environmentally friendly – has increased by over £1million in just a few months

SNP MSP Fergus Ewing said: “This fiscal fiasco is wasting millions of pounds which could be better spent. This is the price of having Green ministers in Government.

“They impose their madcap schemes on normally sensible organisations like the Crown Office – though why they went along with this must be independently reviewed. Surely that huge sum of money should have been used to reduce court delays or help struggling police budgets.

“Instead the money, like the heat pumps' output, is blowing in the wind. It’s time Humza Yousaf sacks these failed ministers before they do even more damage.”

The Scottish Government was last week forced to push back its plan to start phasing out fossil fuel boilers by at least three years. Zero Carbon Buildings Minister Patrick Harvie confirmed the change as the government published a consultation for a new heating bill.

Opposition MSPs have raised doubts about how the decarbonisation plan – which in 2021 was estimated to cost £33billion – would be paid for. There are concerns that without expensive renovations to older properties, electric-powered heat pumps will not work.

The Crown Office said four months ago its Elgin office would be “going green” and closing for up to nine months for the work to take place. Renovations are to include replacing all of the windows, installing a new heating system, and insulating...

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