Response to e-action from Scottish National Party
Thank you for your email – I share your concerns regarding preservation and biodiversification of uplands in Scotland.
In regard to this autumns international meetings on climate and biodiversity, at COP 26 in Glasgow the UK Government Prime Minister Boris Johnson will be representing the whole of the UK on this matter. I understand that the First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon MSP has expressed her wish to represent Scotland at such a crucial international meeting on a devolved matter.
However, I understand the Prime Minister has made comments to suggest that he does not want the First Minister of Scotland in attendance. It is disappointing as the Scottish Government have pioneered world leading climate change legislation that has set a target date for net zero emissions by 2045.
Irrespective of this, I understand that the Minister for Environment, Biodiversity and Land Reform Mairi McAllan MSP has been working hard to ensure that uplands are a top priority for the Scottish Government.
This includes guidance from the Scottish Forestry that will use less disruptive techniques when preparing ground for woodland creation. It will ensure that approval for new applications will no longer be given on any peat soils over 10cm in depth after 1st October. It will only be less intensive cultivation techniques that are approved. This will help preserve peatlands which are a rich natural resource for promoting biodiversity and achieving net zero targets through its natural carbon capture.
Additionally, I understand that the Minister is supporting restoration of peatlands across Scotland in an aim to prevent flooding, promote safe habitat for wildlife and catching carbon from the atmosphere.
I hope this helps.