South of Scotland Regional Land Use Framework Consultation
The Regional Land Use Framework (RLUF) has been developed under the Regional Land Use Partnership pilot, following a period of extensive stakeholder engagement in 2022/23. The pilot is being co-ordinated by South Of Scotland Enterprise in partnership with Dumfries & Galloway Council and Scottish Borders Council, overseen by the Regional Economic Partnership.
The RLUF sets out a concise vision and objectives for land use across the region, providing information on existing land uses (and the benefits they provide) and drivers for land use change. It recognises the urgency of joined up action to address the climate and biodiversity crises and identifies some of the priority changes in land use that are going to be needed. This could include significantly more native woodland creation; peatland restoration; renewable energy generation; and more efficient and environmentally friendly food production that helps restore nature. It also starts to explore where these priority land use changes might be best delivered, drawing on the best available data.
Why do we need an RLUF?
The South of Scotland is a large rural region with an extensive but fragile land-based economy including agriculture, forestry and tourism. As biodiversity loss and climate change impacts increase, so does the pressure on our natural capital assets - including our soils, water, habitats and wildlife. We need to take new approaches to the ways we use and manage our land, so the finite resources can deliver multiple benefits for our businesses, communities and visitors. These benefits range from sustainable food and timber production and renewable energy generation to wider public benefits such as spaces for recreation, tourism, wildlife, carbon storage and clean water.
There has been welcome input from many stakeholders across the region, which has greatly helped in the development of the RLUF.
Invitation to comment
All organisations, communities and individuals were invited to comment on the Consultation draft. The consultation ran for 12 weeks from 1st December 2023 to 23rd February 2024, with various events held. Responses are now being considered.
Following the review of feedback, a final version of the RLUF will be submitted to Scottish Ministers. This will be made available on the pilot webpage: https://www.southofscotlandenterprise.com/RLUP
If you have any queries on the RLUF, please contact the RLUP Project Manager.