Rural and Environment
31st January 2020 by Fergus Ewing MSP
The EU has been a good friend to rural Scotland. For the whole of the Scottish Parliament’s lifetime, the rural economy has benefitted from our membership. Over the years, our engagement with it has allowed Scotland to push our case on everything from agriculture and fisheries policy reform, to fishing quotas and forestry. Scotland has had a voice in the room – a room we will no longer be able to enter.
23rd January 2020 by admin
You may have seen coverage in the media around the UK Committee on Climate Change’s latest report into Land Use. The report states that land use must change to meet the UK's net zero target. Although it is possible to reduce the emission of Greenhouse Gases in ways that are consistent with other strategic priorities for land - such as food production and biodiversity - the current UK & Devolved Administration policy frameworks for food production, forestry, and environment will not achieve the net zero target and must change significantly. The Scottish Government’s response is below.
17th January 2020 by Fergus Ewing MSP
2019 will be remembered as the year that Scotland took a stand on the global climate emergency and saw the introduction of our new world-leading climate change legislation. This sets a target date for Scotland to achieve net-zero emissions by 2045. This means that our contribution to climate change will end, definitively, within one generation. This transition will be for the benefit of our environment, our people, now and in the future. Let me be clear though, achieving this will require additional effort and will present challenges and opportunities, including for farming and food production. It is indisputable that our…
11th December 2019 by jennykane
This Christmas Gary Maclean, Scotland’s National Chef, is encouraging people to consider making something new and tasty with Scottish produce. If you are looking for some inspiration why not try making marinated Scotch Lamb, smoked haddock croquettes or a spicy carrot cake by following Gary’s alternative Christmas recipes? Gigot of Scotch Lamb marinated in mustard,...
1st November 2019 by Fergus Ewing MSP
Following a six year campaign, and sustained pressure by successive Scottish Ministers and key farmer and crofter organisations, an historic wrong has finally been righted. Scotland is getting its convergence funding after all. This wrong saw the UK qualify for a £190 million uplift in EU funding, but Scotland only received £30 million. That money provided for an uplift, that without Scotland’s extremely low average rate per hectare, the UK would not have qualified for.
14th October 2019 by admin
Scotland does not want to leave the EU but there is a strong risk that we may end up leaving without a deal in place on 31st October 2019. While the Scottish Government is doing as much as it can to mitigate the impact of leaving the EU, we cannot mitigate for every impact. Leaving the EU will mean things we currently take for granted, or which we agreed to as part of a Member State, will no longer stand. This note sets out what you need to do to ensure your food and drink business can continue to import/export…
12th September 2019 by Fergus Ewing MSP
Rural Scotland makes a vital contribution to our national economy. Our rural and island assets provide natural and business resources for key economic sectors, especially food and drink, but also energy, tourism, creative industries and life science. I am clear that we must work to build on these successes to improve the wellbeing of our rural, coastal and island communities and provide a positive future for them. Having declared a global climate emergency, achieving our climate ambitions will involve harnessing the power and capital of rural Scotland. This is a challenge, but also an opportunity for us to help people…
5th September 2019 by admin
You will have seen in the news that in yesterday’s Spending Round statement at Westminster, that the Chancellor finally confirmed that the UK Government would right a historic injustice around EU farm payments. In 2013, the EU announced moves to pay Common Agricultural Policy payments more fairly, on the basis of average Euros per hectare. The UK received what was known as a convergence uplift only because of Scotland.
30th August 2019 by admin
£1 million funding for South of Scotland Enterprise Projects to develop rural skills, community enterprises and female-led businesses are the latest recipients of more than £1 million from the South of Scotland Economic Partnership (SOSEP). The Partnership has awarded a total of £1,045,184 to five projects, including an initiative to improve Galashiels Town Centre and...
16th July 2019 by admin
You may have seen in the news and online reports relating to a House of Lords inquiry that found fishermen are continuing to illegally discard dead fish back into the sea.