The Scottish Government’s commitment to deliver on its second Land Use Strategy over the course of the next parliament has been welcomed by landowners.
Scottish Land & Estates said enabling landowners, farmers and managers to play an ever more active role in the delivery of environmental targets would bring substantial environmental benefits to Scotland in future years.
In a statement to parliament today, the new Cabinet Secretary for Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform, Roseanna Cunningham MSP, announced a range of priorities for the next five years including developing measures in the new Land Reform (Scotland) Act and further increasing already ambitious targets on CO2 emissions.
Douglas McAdam, chief executive of Scottish Land & Estates, said: “It is pleasing that the Scottish Government has recognised the vital importance of how land is used to deliver a whole range of outcomes. Whilst it is clear that the conversation around land reform will continue, it is only right that what is being delivered from land is moving higher up the political agenda as well.
“We firmly believe that if the Scottish Government is to meet the very ambitious climate change targets it has set out today - along with other objectives around biodiversity and water quality as well as tackling flooding issues - that it must focus on all the things that can be delivered from land, and work with Scotland’s landowners, farmers and managers to enable them to be part of the solution rather than focusing narrowly on ownership issues.
“The Cabinet Secretary said during today’s debate that land reform seeks to transform Scotland’s relationship with the land. We agree that Scotland’s relationship with the land could change to the benefit of all its people. However, part of that change will come about by supporting landowners and managers to deliver for the environment and a sustainable future for everyone. The Cabinet Secretary gave a commitment to listen to all voices, ideas and views and seek consensus where possible. We very much look forward to working with Ms Cunningham on this basis.”