Campaigners have called for an urgent transport strategy review to be carried out over plans to dual a major road.
A96 Action wants Transport Scotland to reconsider proposals to build a new route in the Garioch area on the Aberdeen to Inverness road.
The Government body has said a decision on a preferred route could now be delayed until next year.
Nine possible route options were initially put forward before being reduced to six.
Campaigners want the Scottish Government to upgrade the existing route instead.
Concerns have been raised over the potential environmental impact of a new road being built in the area.
The Scottish Government passed climate change legislation last month committing the country to achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2045. It has also set a target to reduce harmful emissions by 75% by 2030.
Lorna Anderson, chairwoman of A96 Action, said: “A96 Action calls for an urgent review of current plans to create new dual carriageways through some of Scotland’s finest forests, heath and farmland with consequently large carbon dioxide emissions.
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“The review should start by immediately abandoning plans for the A96 at Inverurie, which comprise an environmentally damaging, unnecessary new bypass of the town on unspoilt farmland, despite the fact that dualling the existing road is possible at a fraction of the environmental cost.”
Transport Scotland said dualling the existing route was not suitable due to the impact on roadside properties.
A spokesman said: “All major projects within the Scottish Government’s transport portfolio are subject to significant assessment work and challenge to ensure we deliver the right schemes and minimise impacts on the environment, and our ambitious A96 dualling programme is no exception to that.
“We need to balance the extensive changes required to meet a target of net-zero greenhouse gas emissions with our duty to ensure that Scotland has high quality infrastructure to meet the needs of all our residents and businesses.”