Scope of the inquiry
The issues the inquiry will address are complex. Climate change continues to have a drastic impact on the environment and wildlife in the region.
The committee will look at the UK's possible role in encouraging the protection of the natural environment, and the vital role of the Scottish renewable sector in cutting emissions. How open should the UK be to the exploitation of natural resources or should it be working harder to protect the unique arctic environment?
If oil and gas extraction continues at the current pace will Scottish firms provide the machinery and expertise? Should the UK look to protect the Arctic Sea from industrial fishing?
If the retreating ice caps open up new waterways, are Scottish ports in a position to facilitate any expansion in trade? What implications will new routes around the High North have on the defence of our territory?
Terms of Reference
Terms of reference: Scotland and the High North
- What are the key challenges facing the High-North and what should Scotland’s role in addressing these challenges be?
- Are there benefits to Scotland and the UK further developing their relationships with Arctic nations?
- What role should the UK play in defence for the High-North?
- What commercial opportunities exist in the High-North for Scottish industry?
a. Is the UK Government doing enough to promote opportunities in the High-North and support Scottish industries such as fishing and shipbuilding to capitalise on these opportunities?
- What are the opportunities and risks of the UK increasing energy interconnectivity in the High-North?
a. Should the UK be engaging with the proposed North Atlantic Power System and how could this benefit Scottish interests?