REHIS News

Preparing for Brexit: an Environmental Health Overview

An initial news article was published by REHIS in March 2019 regarding preparing for Brexit with an environmental overview. This news article aims to provide an update. 

A Brexit deal has been agreed but needs to be ratified. The UK could still leave the EU with no deal on 31 October if the UK and EU do not approve and sign the withdrawal agreement. 

Majority of Scots want tougher control on fireworks

A clear majority of Scots want to see tighter controls on the use and sale of fireworks.

A YouGov survey commissioned by the Scottish Government and involving a representative sample of the Scottish population, showed 71% of adults supported tighter controls on the sale of fireworks to the public, with over half backing a ban.     

And out of more than 16,000 respondents to a Scottish Government consultation on the issue: 

·       94% want to see tighter controls on the sale of fireworks

Smoking ban proposals

A consultation on the introduction of a legally enforceable no-smoking area around hospital buildings has launched.

Although the introduction of no-smoking areas, fines and penalties for smoking or permitting others to smoke outside hospital buildings are now in law, the size and placing of no-smoking areas and the wording of signs has still to be set out in legislation. The consultation provides an opportunity for those affected to provide their views on the details of these aspects so that legislation can be made on these.

The consultation seeks views on:

Scottish emissions of air pollutants 2017

Scotland’s Chief Statistician has announced the publication of a report on emissions of air pollutants in 2017.

The main findings are:

World Environmental Health Day

26 September marked World Environmental Health Day (WEHD) which has been celebrated every year since 2011. 

This year’s theme of “Climate change challenges, time for global Environmental Health to act in unison” aimed to draw attention to the affect’s climate change is having on vulnerable communities and how environmental health professionals play a vital role in protecting communities against the challenges of a variable climate.

Many activities took place around the globe in connection to this big event from Australia to Zimbabwe.

Scotland bans plastic stemmed cotton buds

Scotland has become the first country in the UK to ban the sale and manufacture of plastic-stemmed cotton buds as part of attempts to reduce single use plastics.

Most major retailers switched to paper-stemmed buds in the months leading up to the ban following a campaign.

A similar ban - also including plastic coffee stirrers and straws - comes into force in the rest of the UK next year.

Cotton buds are consistently listed in the top 10 forms of beach litter by the Marine Conservation Society. Across the UK, about 1.8 billion of them are sold every year.

Minimum Unit Pricing has modest impact on the alcohol industry in Scotland

The introduction of minimum pricing for alcohol has had a modest economic impact on the drinks industry in Scotland, a report has found.

The report, commissioned by NHS Health Scotland is part of a wide-ranging evaluation of the Alcohol (Minimum Pricing) (Scotland) Act 2012 which established Minimum Unit Pricing (MUP).

Scottish government confirm no support for fracking

The Scottish Government has set out a finalised policy of no support for the development of unconventional oil and gas (UOG) sometimes known as “fracking” in Scotland.

This means the Scottish Government will not issue licences for new UOG development, and that Scotland’s planning framework will not support development using unconventional oil and gas extraction techniques, including coal bed methane and hydraulic fracturing.

Breastfeeding Friendly Scotland

by Jill Sunter, Health Promotion Officer, Fife Health and Social Care Partnership

Breastfeeding is really important to the health of both mother and baby, yet Scotland has one of the lowest breastfeeding rates in Europe. While many new mums start breastfeeding, some will stop within a few months. This is often because they feel there is a lack of support, particularly when they want to feed their baby outside their home. 

Reduce your business’s energy costs and receive up to £10k cashback with an unsecured, interest-free Scottish Government Loan

Reducing your energy use isn’t just good for our planet, it’s great news for your business’s bottom line too. In fact, advisers from the Scottish Government’s Resource Efficient Scotland programme typically find that by taking action to reduce their energy use, Scottish small to medium-sized businesses (SMEs) can easily slash 24% off their energy costs - and there’s never been a better time to act. 

The Scottish Government’s SME Loan Scheme is helping businesses across Scotland to reduce their energy costs and environmental impact.

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