Our Common Home Plan / Green New Deal

Robin McAlpine: “Our Common Home Plan” – Transition Edinburgh’s  #BuildBackBetter event – 7 May 2020

On 7th May 2020, Transition Edinburgh hosted a #BuildBackBetter event in which Robin McAlpine, Director of Common Weal – Scotland’s Think and Do Tank, shared his thoughts on “Our Common Home Plan”.

The “Our Common Home Plan” is the Green New Deal for Scotland’s #JustRecovery from the #Covid-19 Pandemic and a #JustTransition to the #NetZeroCarbon world we seek.

Access the recording of the event below.

Access the “Our Common Home” website here: https://commonweal.scot/our-common-home

Below is the event report:

Our Common Home Plan: Common Weal’s Green New Deal for a #JustRecovery – Thursday 7 May 2020

This Report was created by the 120 online participants – to whom our thanks!
– a Transition Edinburgh event with support from Common Weal and SEDA


6.00pm   Zoom Room familiarisation session 

6.15pm   Welcome and introductions

6.20pm   Robin McAlpine shared Common Weal vision https://bit.ly/transition7mayvideo

6.40pm   Response / Q&A followed by Breakout Rooms

6.50pm   Conversations: “Implementing the vision”

7.20pm   Return to Plenary: What Next?

7.40pm   Wrap up / and Closed at 7.45pm

Our Common Home Plan Resource Links: NB All links correct now!

Analysis of Pre-event Survey replies from 60 people  Pages 2-7

FlipChart notes from Breakout Rm Conversations    Pages 8-16 

Chat Box notes with some useful links                     Pages 17-19

Analysis of Pre-event Survey response by 58 people  Pages 2-7

60 People responded to a short survey which encouraged participants to read some of the Our Common Home Plan material BEFORE the session and provide quick feedback.  

Q1.  What’s your VERY short response to the ideas in the Plan and how they might help in delivering a #JustRecovery from Coronavirus Pandemic?

  • Thought provoking
  • Very needed. Clear and concise and in language of politicians
  • Holistic
  • Great to read such a lucid exposition of a rational way forward – for people & planet
  • These are very practical and pragmatic approaches which I like. Particularly interested in the externality tax, as I think a shift in tax / law / incentive is the real way to encourage individual change. Not forcing but directing choices.
  • Exciting, feasible + just what we need.
  • fantastic, comprehensive, realistic detailed vision
  • Good progressive ideas, some costs seem optimistic? £15,000 for retrofit to passive house standards???
  • Sustainability
  • I read and shared all ten parts a few days ago. It’s a lot to take in, and I like it. The problem is getting the government to back it. I don’t see Andrew Wilson et al being too keen. 
  • Expansion of green jobs and introducing strong legislation. Planned transition, as opposed to vague, profit-driven and slow market mechanisms. While the plan is far reaching, I am concerned that it does not fully consider the impact on citizens, particularly poorly paid. I suggest equally bold social and economic reforms to address these.
  • No-brainer but fantastic to see it
  • Great, Lets get working!
  • Relevant though idealistic
  • I like that they seem to grasp the roots of the issues and challenge the orthodox political thinking when talking about housing.
  • Fantastic that such a comprehensive costed programme for a much more sustainable Scotland has been articulated! The measures identified will go a long way towards a just transition
  • Equitable future for all.
  • As a teacher, I’m very keen on the radical transformation in our education system that is going to be needed.
  • great strategies
  • Lots of really great ideas that have been thought through and costed and are all linked together. Inspirational
  • Hoping to find out at the session
  • Ambitious, but refreshing ideas that can make a difference
  • I think the pandemic creates the space that may be required to start something new. Unemployed people could be redirected to this work. Investment is going to be needed even to try to get back to where we were so why not use it to move forward to this vision.
  • Great!
  • Makes me feel much more positive and hopeful for the future
  • Support in helping me plan for my organisation.  

Q2. How do the ideas in Common Weal’s Our Common Home Plan /
Green New Deal for Scotland make you feel?

  • Excited
  • Hopeful
  • Positive, hopeful
  • They reflect my own vision for Scotland.
  • A little hopeful.
  • Hopeful and motivated.
  • excited for the future
  • Hopeful, empowered, energised, determined.
  • Optimistic.
  • positive and excited
  • optimistic, but it will take enthusiastic support from many to make it happen
  • A bold response to an urgent question but not practical
  • Energised about the future
  • Proud and relieved
  • Hopeful, excited and ready to participate in a ‘renewed’ future.
  • Relieved that there are like minded humans
  • a bit overwhelmed, but some interesting ideas.
  • excited but a bit doubtful about heating and housing proposals, as discussed with Robin in autumn 2019 (Ruth from Fuel Poverty Action)
  • Need to learn more
  • Positive – a solution to the climate crisis is possible and practical.
  • Optimistic
  • Hopeful, energised
  • focused hopeful proud for Scotland able to engage with other ides as life emerges
  • Positive
  • Hopeful
  • Want to know more, want to do more
  • Hopeful and excited
  • Hopeful for the possibility, concerned about how/if it can be achieved and the shortness of time in which it needs to be
  • They make me feel hopeful. All we have now is negativity. This is the ideal time to
  • If this happened it would be a great seachange
  • Encouraged that there is some recognition for the need to use low impact insulation products
  • Immediately hopeful, in a way that I’ve often assumed would be unrealistic, but with the thought put into these ideas and the amount of work done so far I genuinely believe achieving this kind of society is possible.
  • Excited about what is possible if we get a critical mass behind it. also overwhelmed by the challenge making it real presents.
  • optimistic
  • Optimistic
  • Surprised and hopeful
  • I feel very inspired by the thought and detail these have, taking many ideas and presenting clear cut directions and solutions is what is desperately needed to move forward.
  • I feel like they really reflect my vision for a more just society – it is really exciting the see a pragmatic, tangible response to the climate crisis that also understands social justice.
  • inspired and energised by the comprehensiveness and detailing of the plan, however worry slightly that it will be difficult to motivate certain areas/sectors of society to support and implement it.
  • Excited about the possibilities and scared about the scale.
  • I would love to see it. I’m normally quite pessimistic given the entrenched vested interests in our ‘corridors of power’, but with the current crisis being so fundamentally destabilising I feel anything may be possible.
  • Hopeful, tearful
  • Hopeful that we are not walking head first into climate chaos and actually using our time and energy to do good things in life – like heat peoples homes, grow sustainable food, rewild the land that has been exploited for centuries.
  • Inspired and resolved to help build
  • I like that they appear to strike the balance between being ambitious enough to recognise scale of the challenge but also are built on an apparently sound footing.
  • Encouraged and inspired to study the fine detail
  • Supported. Not alone. Not just imagining a future. Part of a collective.
  • Proud
  • Hopeful, upbeat, inspired
  • Proud to be living here and hopefully contributing to implementation
  • At this point of reading, optimistic
  • Optimistic but concerned about the political will.
  • Positive. The ideas have vision and a way forward that can benefit all
  • Excited, happy, hopeful.
  • Aspirational

Q3. Have you a SHORT Question for Robin?

  • How are you going to convert the most sceptical people? Please balance the hard facts with a public narrative that explains how we can fix our predicament. We lack stories of possibility.
  • How will you persuade the politicians to forward the Plan?
  • Wouldn’t the nationalisation of more industries and sectors make the plan work better and more reliably?
  • What role do you see for community-led action to bring a new future into being?
  • After 35 years in the now ailing oil industry, my is extremely anxious about his future. Where would his skills and experience be most valued in Scotland under this plan?
  • What is the first step (after this zoom call…) we can take to make this happen now?
  • Does Scottish Government support and commit to delivering Our Common Home and if not, why not?
  • How do we participate in starting the transformation ?
  • How can we push for this plan within our relevant professional groups/bodies?
  • What are your top 5 recommended reads for people to realise #EverythingMustChange?
  • Is there (a need for) Scottish Government support for the Common Home Plan?
  • District heating still best for well insulated new builds? Can you really get 90% just from roofs and draughtproofing? What about highrise buildings? And on another question entirely, I see you have UBI but have you considered a Care Income for people caring (more now with Covid-19) unpaid for family members and communities, as proposed in Green New Deal for Europe blueprint and in their Covid response here? https://www.gndforeurope.com/covid 
  • Does Common Weal have plans or hopes to engage with the Scottish Government, and Edinburgh and Glasgow City Councils during the period that their detailed Climate Action Plans are being developed?
  • How can I / we get involved?
  • How will you hold and see through the plan and use an emergent approach?
    Who are our partners in the world moving forward ?
  • The CHP feels focused on urban areas, perhaps due to the concentration of Scotland’s population. ScotGov policy is to encourage rural repopulation. How does this fit into the plan?
  • Attending to bridge building is more important than being oppositional? Discuss
  • How can this gain political support?
  • Home working has been shown to be a credible option. How can we convince employers to consider this to open up the market for those who due to disability, caring duties etc can if they want work from home?
  • This, and any big changes like this need wide support. What level is there now for radical changes like this, and how do you stop it just being imposed?
  • Re you able to justify the continued use of petrochemical based hazardous materials in buildings in order to achieve energy targets
  • What would you say to someone to encourage them to get on board with these ideas if they read the How We Live page and say “no, I don’t want that”?
  • What partners do you have for implementation?
  • Yes – has the Common Weal considered the issue of Consumption Rebound and how to deal with that (in terms of your proposed policy actions)?
  • Do you think in terms of available resources in terms of materials, labour and skills the ambitious targets are achievable in the timescales?
  • How can I get involved?
  • Could you describe more how externality taxes would work, and would this include a pollution tax, for example that a company becomes responsible for the cost of the environmental impact, i.e. the cost to dispose of / recycle / clean up the effects of its production. What are the challenges of implementing this and how can they be overcome?
  • Regarding the built environment, are more stringent regulations really the only option for creating sustainable homes? Current regulations (and the Passivhaus standard) are not set up to deal with natural building techniques which rely on thermal mass and breathable materials, despite being proved to have high thermal performance. This is because U-Values and airtightness are limited measurements which are not able to tell the whole story. Will regulation be adapted/ adaptable to allow for use of natural materials?  
  • Regarding the built environment – the concept of circularity in the brief isn’t extended to architecture, but it is clear that we have a wealth of building materials available to us in deconstruction sites across the country. Steel, for example, requires huge amounts of energy to ‘recycle’, but studies show that it can be tested and reused safely with a greatly reduced environmental impact. Current regulations make this near impossible however. Will you fight for implementing policies which allow and encourage designers to make use of ‘waste’ materials in construction?
  • Do you feel in your guts that you can get the current SNP leadership wholeheartedly behind this?
  • Private profit and capitalist motives are responsible for a lot of the environmental (and social) failures in our society; and £170bn is a large bait for profiteers.
    These motives must be excluded to ensure the plan improves economic inequality and achieves socio-environmental justice – are there thoughts on introducing increased transparency, maximum pay gap, democratic accountability, punitive measures etc for groups working within the plan?
  • We are used to seeing things broken down into topics and we also know that it is a critical change from old behaviours that we’re talking about a whole system – how will we accelerate our learning of how to bring this to reality with essential circularity / wholeness ?
  • What are the hurdles on the way to making a Green New Deal happen in Scotland?
  • How do you propose getting aspects of this plan to be on the agenda when confronted by the litany of consultants and advisors to the government for all the vested interests it’ll upset?
  • Are you confident that the Nationalisation of existing energy capacity can be achieved for £10 billion? Which industry bodies and major players have you discussed this with, and what has been their response?
  • I am an architect, specialising in existing buildings. I am upskilling for retrofit and trying to give free advice to clients and social media about the challenge. What else can I do?
  • How do we stop the SQA from having such a damaging influence on Scottish education?
  • What can individuals do now – supporting from the bottom up?
  • What are the 3 key next steps to get things moving?
  • How does the plan compare with the work that has been done in Costa Rica
  • What would the underlying economic model look like? If we don’t reinvent it I believe we will tend to the same outcomes and destructive, wasteful, lowest common denominator, concentrating money in few places and few hands outcomes we currently have.
  • What can we start immediately?
  • How can we satisfy governance requirements for public sector / third sector orgs if these are slow to follow?

Q4. Please share ONE WORD with us to describe your response to the suggested way forward.  [Re-ordered alphabetically!]

Ambitious! / Awesome / Bold / Collaboration / collaboration / Collaboration. / Compelling / Comprehensive / Connected / Convinced  / Empathetic. / Encouraged / Encouraged / Energised / energised! / Essential / excited / Excited / Excited / Excited / Excited / Exciting / Fair / GID / Good / grateful / Great start / HEMP / Hope / Hope / Hopeful / hopeful / hopeful / Hopeful / Hopeful / HOPEFUL / Hopeful / hopeful / Hopeful  / Impractical / Inspired / Inspiring / Inspiring / Interested / Kindness  / magic / More / Optimistic  / Optimistic. / Pragmatically-optimistic! / Provocative/realistic / socialism / Structure / Together / URGENT! / Wish to learn more / Wondering / Yes! / Yes!

FlipChart notes from Breakout Rm Conversations    Pages 8-16 

FlipChart Notes for Breakout Room 1

Q.1  How do the ideas in Our Common Home / Green New Deal for Scotland make you feel?

  • Hopeful
  • Excited
  • Sense of urgency, urgent action needed
  • If change is not backed by legislation/regulation will be difficult to achieve
  • I feel excited about it, but worry about how we get the people in government behind it.  I can’t see Andrew Wilson et al being keen.

Q.2 What’s your VERY short response to the ideas in the Plan and how they might help in delivering a #JustRecovery from the Coronavirus Pandemic?

  • I usually feel pessimistic but the current crisis is so fundamentally destabilising to globalization that I feel optimistic that anything may be possible.
  • Forestry development seems like a critical path
  • Land reform, reforestation, recyclable wood based plastics.  All connected and high potential areas for Scotland
  • As Industrial Agriculture is responsible for about 1/3rd of global GHG emissions it is really important and promising to see that this Green New Deal is looking at a self-sufficient model for agriculture. As food production also comes with a lot of plastic waste, it would be interesting to know if this is, or will also be encompassed in the Green New Deal. 
  • Composting – what happens with our food waste?
  • Frustration / impatience / collectively / fear of being hopeful / hope vs optimism / terrified of poor outcome / have to start somewhere

Thanks breakout room 1, you were great! ABS

FlipChart Notes for Breakout Room 2

  • Forming alliances to present a united front to government
  • We have been discussing how such a plan can go from being a written document to a plan which can be / is implemented in the timeline outlined?
  • Marketing not all bad
  • How to get to individuals
  • Hard to pick up the plan and read the detail

Words: eager / frustration / impatient / hope

FlipChart Notes for Breakout Room 3

Q.1  Energised / deja vu / hope / possibility / confused

  • Have we heard this before? an attempt to tie it all together / is this a possibility?
  • We started – this is too politicised
  • We then went – we need to be politicised and show leadership
  • Because – this has to happen now
  • To hopeful – that this could really happen here in Scotland
  • to – we should be more socially sophisticated, we should consider a lot of smaller societal changes such as claiming back the streets from the cars
  • But – we have to bring everyone with us, this is so important and and we can not force this on people especially those from outwith our bubble

Conclusion – this needs a balanced plan.

Words:  Positive / sophisticated / ambitious / curious / opportunity / crabit

FlipChart Notes for Breakout Room 4

  • green jobs
  • ambitious
  • working together is essential
  • like thats its been costed – surplus is good
  • needs to work at all levels – needs popular – for the population
  • good that it is trying to address all ‘7’crises
  • plan should address poverty and this needs to be highlighted
  • a green recovery plan creating good skilled well paid jobs is needed
  • COVID has highlighted the essential workers which are often seen at lower paid less desirable jobs – they need to be valued more.
  • education – address the balance consumerism against resource use
  • whole life cost /value approach is essential to procurement and decision making

FlipChart Notes for Breakout Room 5

  • Where do public services come into this plan? There are big issues in health services
  • Need to build a critical mass to drive this forward
  • Need to find a way to enable this to happen in rural areas as well as urban ones
  • Are we testing out the new communications methods now, neighbourhoods and technological ways?
  • We are hampered by the education agenda right now. The SQA is holding that back – teachers have little power to change the exam system – we will need young people and parents to put pressure on SG to reform SQA and the education system so that learning for sustainability is central, and not subordinate to high-stakes final exams.
  • We need narrative, facts don’t win arguments, to make this happen. We need creative people to do this!

FlipChart Notes for Breakout Room 6

  • Many of us are new to this but feeling inspired.
  • This appears to be costed and practical and achievable
  • Inspiring, hopeful, visionary,
  • Covers many key factors … plenty of pegs … tailored to many audiences …
  • Very ambitious but with lots of details.
  • Only worry – how to build the momentum for it to be implemented
  • Unclear how to build the consensus quickly – what might the mechanism for this be?
  • When is this to be launched?
  • Can 1+1+1+1+1 achieve the change necessary to shift the “oil tanker”?
  • Does the pandemic mean that people are more likely to listen?
  • Challenge to think about our auto-pilot?
  • Need to get access to the spaces in which decisions are made?
  • Need skills to work as a network and opportunities to contribute as citizens
  • Levers that could be used include participatory budgeting, Citizens Assemblies, etc…
  • Channels exist to contribute to decision making but these require time and effort and insight. 
  • A commitment to politics across communities is required so that participation is increased and developed. How do we engage people so that they become active in local politics?
  • It needs to be cool to be active. Activism needs to be more about contributing positively than about opposing single issues.
  • Movements may be the way forward (less oppositional)…
  • Let’s refuse to go back to normal!

FlipChart Notes for Breakout Room 7

  • Inspiring work. 
  • How does the plan account for rebound effect? (i.e. make energy cheaper for people and people use more of it wiping out the gains you made)?
  • International endorsements
  • Build back better.
  • Believe the model works.
  • The sums add up.
  • Border carbon tax.
  • Starting the right debate.

FlipChart Notes for Breakout Room 8

Our group includes people seeing the Covid 19 emergency as an opportunity. Already engaged in climate change / XR/ environmental change/ timber construction/ self-build/ teaching /training. Some of us have known Common Weal for a while.


  • Struck by the notion that – like Carbon Watchers – it’s on each of us to participate but collectively and get the government and others to aggregate the change. Helps to reduce frustration as an individual, it’s taking into account the wider impacts.
  • Economy is in such dire straits that to see a new economy described as possible with new jobs / retraining, etc is very exciting.
  • Just want to help make it happen. Very depressing to work on projects with high impact materials, etc, that have inherent ‘wastefulness’.
  • Constantly trying to talk to my students to be part of the solution in all this. This has to be driven at govt level as well – have to invest in students doing the right jobs for the new ‘normal’. ‘Lowest bidder, low wages , delay delay delay’ behaviours are not helping young people bring their positivity, just dreams and aspirations. – The government needs to invest to make all this a reality.
  • This is great in bringing a roadmap for top-down action to meet grass roots commitment, knowledge, experience and commitment to a fruitful and essential outcome. So used to being in the bottom-up position where it doesn’t feel that it will be viable for a whole life.
  • Chance to break habits and start afresh.
  • One of us has children who seem to be getting bored of ‘looking after the world’.
  • Really interesting to hear the point that we need to work with what humans want to do – like ‘ why do all the nail bars need to re-open after lock-down? – well they wouldn’t be there at all if it wasn’t what humans wanted to do. Just find non-toxic ways to do this……? But maybe not top of the list.
  • Some of the ‘consumer’ trappings may well fall away as we become more connected as a positive community where we feel engaged and contributing – more positively confident in our place in the community. Bottom up process becomes much more diverse and energetic .
  • What better way to reset things, from the lock-down highlighting what we really value, what we appreciate, what we miss.

How we feel?

  • I like idea of energy system that provides jobs
  • It sounds weird but I feel it will be OK to die when my time comes because there is a workable plan and my son will hopefully live on in something good.
  • Re-energised and keen to find out HOW I can participate.
  • Feels great to see that there might be something worthwhile to contribute to
  • First hurdle is to establish firm political will to give them courage to do this.

ONE WORDs – Music, Excited, Inspiring, Hopeful x 2.

FlipChart Notes for Breakout Room 9

Q.1  How do the ideas in Our Common Home / Green New Deal for Scotland make you feel?

  • pleased to hear this as we must not go back to where we were. Good to see that there’s a whole lot of us
  • really happy that someone is really applying them to nitty gritty of what needs to be done, incl. costing up. Tremendous that it’s happening in Scotland.
  • Great that it’s linked to climate change.
  • never been convinced that there was a single answer because solutions were not holistic – this one is a holistic deliverable plan – what’s not to like? Catnip to the right wing press. Concerned by how much trash talk this will get once it gets public and beyond our bubble.
  • action plan, feels manageable and sensible. More drive for change to respond after Coronavirus.
  • makes me feel comforted to see so many people that are not from my (young) generation deal with this problem.
  • Now is the time as the Coronavirus leads us to think about these questions.

Q.2 What’s your VERY short response to the ideas in the Plan and how they might help in delivering a #JustRecovery from the Coronavirus Pandemic?

  • The focus of the plan is on justice. 
  • Coronavirus has demonstrated that certain things e.g. food supplies + jobs are more sensitive than we thought previously. It’ll be interesting to see more of this integrated
  • greater focus on Local supply of goods as opposed to current globalisation approach
  • Maslow’s Pyramid of Needs: thinking of our basic needs again but in the context of climate change
  • We’ve seen what’s possible from the Government if you really want it.

Final point – Log one word each Please share ONE WORD with us to describe your response to the suggested way forward.

  •          Juicy
  •          Support it
  •          Inspiring
  •          Daunting
  •          Animated
  •          Deliverable

FlipChart Notes for Breakout Room 10

  • Some people feel overwhelmed but at the same time people are liking it and optimistic about some elements.
  • Wondering how feasible, feeling it needs more visual images and infographics
  • Umbrella

FlipChart Notes for Breakout Room 11

Q1 How does this make us feel?

  • Challenging, interesting
  • To what extent does this get political support?
  • It feels very complete- but what happens if some of it can’t be delivered? 
  • It tries to address everything and show it is possible.
  • Can it be implemented piece-by-piece?
  • We need to start somewhere! This gives us direction to achieve change over a short period.
  • Gives people something to buy into and rally around.
  • Scottish focus feels achievable – within our control. The global perspective is overwhelming.
  • Worried about a reliance on Scottish Independence – what is the impact if this doesn’t happen? Need to recognise what is devolved and what isn’t.
  • It needs to be positive and needs to be a better offer to bring people along with it.
  • Can’t deny the UK-wide and international implications and relationships for making changes.

Q2 What’s your very short response to the ideas in the plan and how they might help in delivering a just recovery from the Coronavirus pandemic?

  • It is a positive response and could make life better.
  • Creates the opportunity to take control and have power over our environment
  • Harnessing the gains we have made in the lockdown – i.e. shopping locally and identifying the value in what is available
  • We need to ensure we can support small scale businesses so these are not lost in the face of restrictions. We need to support these where they don’t have the deep resources of global corporations.
  • The shift from consumption to contribution to society – so that people are empowered to engage

Q3 One word to describe your response

  • Jolly good
  • Positive
  • Encouraging
  • Energising
  • Opportunism
  • Hopeful

FlipChart Notes for Breakout Room 12


  • Very positive – to feel that we can take personal responsibility to make a better society
  • Encouraged – with detailed, real, implementable and convincing plan
  • Ready to take action!
  • Excited – by the plans but also slightly disempowered – unclear what we can do in our own community as the plan is based on putting national structures in place, but community led action is crucial for resilience.
  • It’s half a story on the top down method which we do need, a framework, but also we needs bottom up plans, and getting community and individual active contributions.
  • What roles can individuals make?
  • The total budget over 25 years is set at 1 billion pounds, and the scale at training needed is going to vastly exceed the 1 billion tag.
  • Having worked in renewable energy for many years, the assumption for net costing being zero is built on another assumption that the nationalising energy in Scotland cost £10bn.  That the income of 2.5bn generated every year to fund this from energy generation is sound? How confident can we be on this, or is it few magnitudes too low? Scottish Renewables will find this threatening to their economic mode of operation- they would argue it would cost a lot more to buy out these shareholding publicly listed companies.
  • Is the cost plan robust? This is central to the economic feasibility to this, make us deeply troubled.
  • Is there a Gantt chart, timeline with all the critical elements on it, where progress can be tracked, where additional input can be sought in time, advisory and consultations can be sought in time, where we can all see the bottlenecks, draw in the right people at the right time.
  • When is this resilience in economics document to be published? What economic consultation and advice has gone into the think tank on the economics of this?
  • How can we convince people to get on board if they can use these costing arguments to hit back on this plan? 
  • How can this plan be rolled out world wide ? so that we really help climate crisis in real terms globally?


  • Covid gave us a pause, to realise we got to wake up to the larger crisis…
  • Covid Crisis is an opportunity join up the agendas between economic and environmental crisis
  • This plan will create work and jobs, and this is new opportunity to many, lots of people are looking for work now. However, training needs to be put into place, with job opening at the end. Then there would be lots of people participating.
  • Massive skills gap at the moment, we should fill that! (Do we have enough training budget?)
  • Hotel work and tourism work is not going to come back any time soon so a great opportunity for many.
  • There is a worry that there will be rampant move towards industrialisation and progress that might overtake the plan, and not let this plan happen.
  • Scotland could do this without seeking independence, and have this plan rolled out straight after Covid to not miss the opportunity, and take this forward with our current devolved government.

FlipChart Notes for Breakout Room 13

One-word responses

  • Brilliant
  • Practical
  • Lock down makes it more likely to happen – that Scotland should not wait for Westminster.
  • Let’s go / Inspiring
  • concerned that there should be a document that captures the work that people have been doing in the care professions and some as unpaid carers. So many badly paid these are things that should be addressed and recognised. Or do they go back to being Cinderella.
  • Scotland is light on its feet and could be an example.
  • concerned about the poverty in the population. He has been active for many different issues. He is concerned about the food supply chains and feels we have to go back to growing our own. Common Home speaks to the poverty and the numbers
  • the new Marshall Plan. Edinburgh Bypass is no longer a problem, the answer is not to drive on it. 
  • The idea of a universal income Fairer Society
  • Different Types of jobs Need to counteract opportunists

FlipChart Notes for Breakout Room 14

How does it make us feel?

  • Good – like we are building something not reacting
  • Feels empowering to be “doing”
  • Essential to link together different areas which are systemic
  • Offers us hope moving forward
  • Is it enough?

How will the plan offer a #JustRecovery?

  • Pandemic highlights insecurities and lack of resilience
  • We have seen amazing response from individuals – collaborating and providing mutual support – which demonstrates this is human nature
  • By healing economic inequality, we can ensure that everyone has equal access to a clean, healthy environment
  • Upskilling, educating, retraining; secure jobs and full employment resulting from the plan

One word

  • More!
  • Re-energised
  • Optimistic
  • Determined

FlipChart Notes for Breakout Room 15

  • Although the plan is costed the devil will be in the detail!
  • Simplicity is key when delivering the different elements of the plan, e.g. refurbishment of existing buildings for energy efficiency can be done very simply and very effectively using natural, non-toxic materials. Alternatively it can be made very complex, with increased chance of failure.
  • The Scottish plan for a Green New Deal sounds achievable, and has adequate detail on how it will be delivered.
  • The plan feels very comprehensive but how do we get Scottish Government to listen and to act? How do we lobby effectively for positive change?
    Collective action is key!
  • Common Home Plan will create losers, e.g. the very rich, those who make carbon-intensive primary materials e.g. stone and metal, energy companies. They will lobby hard – both to the government and to the public – to ensure their interests are protected. Effective communication is essential if nationalisation of these basic infrastructure services is accepted as being in the public interest. (We all know it’s a good idea, but this entire group is in its own echo chamber.)
  • Scotland is starting from a powerful point (relative to group members in Northern Ireland, England and Wales) in terms of legislation to achieve change for public good. This includes community right to buy, land reform and community empowerment. These are mostly at the community level. How can this be scaled up (e.g. Part 5 of the community right to buy legislation) to force the sale of private infrastructure if necessary?

Reference: Richard Heinberg: Peak Everything *


  1. All building-related ideas [in the plan] are great but needs to be holistic
  2. The plan must have health at its heart – of people, place and planet
  3. Excited about low carbon construction materials development 
  4. Equitable food production and distribution is key
  5. Feels like a long way to go, but the plan is a great start.

Chat Box notes with some useful links Pages 16-19

Edited Chat Box Log