This item was published during the term of a previous administration that ended in April 2007
Cash for environmental protection projects
Over £251,000 is to be provided to seven projects this year to help local communities improve the environment they live in.
Environment Minister Ross Finnie today announced that projects ranging from training and skills to demonstrating renewable energy to communities are to receive funding from the Executive's Sustainable Action Grants scheme.
The scheme supports projects which promote a sustainable way of living and contribute to securing environmental justice.
Mr Finnie said:
"The Scottish Executive is committed to delivering sustainable development and an improved environment for all. These projects are playing an integral part in helping us achieve that aim.
"Choosing Our Future set out the challenges for Scotland in sustainable development. These projects will make a real contribution towards our priorities of sustainable consumption and production, climate change, natural resource protection, environmental enhancement and sustainable communities."
The Executive invited applications for Sustainable Action Grants in January 2006. The funding was available for national and regional projects of between one and three years duration that help to further the objectives in 'Choosing Our Future - Scotland's Sustainable Development Strategy' which was published in December 2005.
The projects are:
- Solar Cities Scotland - £36,971 in 2006-07, £26,015 in 2007-08 and £39,706 in 2008-09 for a Dundee Sun City project, developing a participative awareness-raising campaign to engender a culture change and collective responsibility towards energy efficiency and renewable energy. The aim is to develop an approach which can be adapted and promoted to other communities throughout Scotland. The project will undertake a carbon footprint audit of building occupiers and work with the public to find ways in which they can reduce building energy use.
- Dumfries and Galloway Farming and Wildlife Advisory Group and Highland Farming and Wildlife Advisory Group - £22,388 in 2006-07, £16,654 in 2007-08 and £2056 in 2008-09 (Dumfries and Galloway) and £28,818 in 2006-07, £25,998 in 2007-08 and £3,104 in 2008-09 (Highland) for a project 'Linking sustainable farming, tourism and biodiversity' - to encourage visitors into the rural areas and promote a greater appreciation of farming and biodiversity management. There will be a number of common features, covering two very different areas. This work will provide advice on habitat enhancement, and increase visitor appreciation of environmental land management and the rural economy.
- Borders Machinery Ring - £35,500 in 2006-07, £39,500 in 2007-08 and £35,500 in 2008-09 for a project, Sustainable Energy in Farming, in the Borders and Lanarkshire, jointly with the Scottish Institute of Sustainable Technology (SISTech), identifying opportunities to incorporate renewable energy systems into existing farms and rural communities. The project will establish energy projects which support rural enterprise, involve local communities and promote rural economies. There will be a conference on Sustainable Energy in Farming. The project should lead to a model for communities throughout Scotland.
- Sustainable Communities Initiative - £30,590 in 2006-07 and £9,655 in 2007-08 for a project to maximise use of the Earthship Visitor Centre (located at Kinghorn Loch in Fife). This will expand activity on waste and energy, with the aim of achieving self-funding status by the end of year 2. There will be evening adult creative waste workshops, a Green Living Experience on living in an eco home, consuming in a more ecological way and minimising waste, a micro-renewables workshop series, and profile-raising of the visitor centre to increase visitor numbers.
- Scottish Therapeutic Gardening Network - £33,437 in 2006-07, £30,265 in 2007-08 and £30,776 in 2008-09 for a project providing support, information and advocacy to a network of therapeutic gardening projects throughout Scotland through events, an annual conference and a newsletter. It will enable disabled and disadvantaged people to improve their health and quality of life through cultivating and conserving land, and help build sustainable communities. Scottish garden projects are involved in recycling initiatives and renovating neglected sites. Many produce local food - improving food access and contributing to healthier diets and understanding of good nutrition.
- Employability Orkney - £34,000 in 2006-07, £30,000 in 2007-08 and £30,000 in 2008-009 for an Orkney Furniture Project to re-use, repair and recycle furniture and household goods to fulfil local demand for donated or low-cost furniture to people in need or on low incomes, divert waste from landfill and provide employment and training opportunities. At present waste is exported to Shetland. It will replace a small furniture store run by Age Concern Orkney which closed in December 2005.
- Scottish Traditional Skills Training Centre - £30,000 in 2006-07, £20,000 in 2007-08 and £20,000 in 2008-09 to deliver training in conservation skills for the regeneration and sustainability of the built and natural environment. This is a regional project, in Aberdeenshire - based at Fyvie Castle - with expected wider outreach. It aims to deliver training for those directly implementing construction techniques. The training will be relevant to the use of traditional skills and materials, including drystone walling, the use of lime mortar in building conservation, and roof work - as well as other skills such as woodland conservation.
It was announced in January that the sustainable action grant scheme would be extended until 2009. The scheme is funded from the Environment and Rural Affairs Department's Sustainable Action Fund budget. The criteria this year were amended following publication of the Sustainable Development Strategy.
The total funding is £610,934 over three years. The funding is indicative for the financial year 2008-09 provided that money is made available to this scheme in each relevant spending review.