Dumfries & Galloway businesses share Net Zero and Fair Work commitments with Scottish Government Minister

Dumfries & Galloway businesses share Net Zero and Fair Work commitments with Scottish Government Minister

A range of Dumfries & Galloway businesses and social enterprises have met Scottish Government Minister Richard Lochhead MSP to discuss their Net Zero and Fair Work progress.

Mr Lochhead, Minister for Just Transition and Fair Work, spoke to a range of local organisations on Thursday 2 March, in both Dumfries and Annan.

The visit

His visit started with a trip to Dumfries-based Covetrus, to hear about the global animal health technology and services group’s Green Pledge to kickstart their Net Zero journey, and their efforts to engage, support and reward their staff.

Mr Lochhead then joined a networking event hosted by South of Scotland Enterprise which was attended by a range of local businesses and social enterprises to discuss and share their efforts to adopt Fair Work and Net Zero in their workplaces.

Attendees included CovetrusNairn ConstructionLet’s Get SportyKilcoThe Crichton TrustCarbon Capture ScotlandLaggan and Creatomatic.

The Minister’s trip was rounded off by a visit to Annan to see industrial boiler specialists and manufacturers Cochran.

Cochran’s team discussed the commercialisation of hydrogen and decarbonisation of steam, as well as how they wish to bring more young people into engineering.

SOSE, a Living Hours and Living Wage employer, has supported each business and social enterprise who took part in the day, through either expert help and advice, or funding.

Minister for Just Transition and Fair Work Richard Lochhead said:

“The Scottish Government is working with businesses to invest in the skills, infrastructure and innovation that will deliver a Just Transition to Net Zero and the associated growth and employment opportunities – including in the South of Scotland.

"A just transition, with Fair Work at its heart, will help build a greener and more equal Scotland.

“Fair Work and fair pay are good for business. They help improve staff retention and productivity, reduce recruitment costs and contribute to a diverse, skilled and motivated workforce.

“It is great to see a growing number of businesses in the South of Scotland embracing Fair Work principles that will drive success, wellbeing and prosperity for individuals, businesses, organisations and local communities.”

Dr Martin Valenti, SOSE’s Director of Net Zero, Nature and Entrepreneurship, said:

“We were delighted to host Mr Lochhead to show him first hand the wide range of businesses and social enterprises doing brilliant work on the journey to becoming Net Zero and Fair Work employers.

“Their enthusiasm and ambition for not just their own business growth, but the development of their employees and contributing to our collective Net Zero targets, were hugely impressive.

“While it remains a challenging time for businesses, The Just Transition to Net Zero, and Fair Work, provide mutual benefits for individuals, organisations and wider society.

“Any organisation in the South keen to develop their Net Zero and Fair Work plans are encouraged to come and talk to us.”

Tom Ritchie, Managing Director of Cochran, said:

“The Minister’s visit gave us an opportunity to discuss the technological developments Cochran is making towards reducing emissions in our industry, and contributing to the Net Zero economy.

“The visit also allowed us discuss our commitment to Fair Work, as a Living Wage employer which is aiming to create a more diverse and inclusive workplace.”