On the 5th of May last week voters from Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland took to the polls to vote in the devolved elections. The results have been announced over the past few days and are as follows:
The Scottish National Party (SNP) led by Alex Salmond were elected with a landslide vote in Scotland, gaining their first ever majority. The SNP unseated several Labour Members of Scottish Parliament (MSP’s), picking up five constituency seats in Glasgow, and a further two on the regional list winning an overall total of 23 seats.
Carwyn Jones led Welsh Labour to power following the votes with the gain of a further 4 seats. The vote however left Labour hanging 1 seat away from the majority, leading to speculation of the formation of a future coalition within the Welsh Assembly between Labour and either the Liberal Democrats or Plaid Cymru.
With results still coming in until Tuesday elections have not yet passed in Northern Ireland. However, the Democratic Unionists Party (DUP), led by Peter Robinson and Sinn Féin led by Gerry Adams are well ahead of their rival parties. The DUP and Sinn Féin had of yesterday, won the most seats in Northern Ireland, with 38 and 29 respectively. This result if unchallenged will allow both groups to retain their positions as the two major parties in the Northern Ireland Assembly.
What these results mean for the environment is indicated in each party’s 2011 manifesto:
• The SNP manifesto features chapters on low carbon ambitions, climate change targets and the rural agenda.
• The Welsh Labour manifesto includes a chapter on the environment and sustainability and another on rural communities.
• The manifesto of the DUP features a section on the environment and another regarding agrifood.