Scottish Crown Estate strengthens local voice

Scottish Parliament has passed a legislation which gives local authorities and communities a stronger voice in the management of Scottish Crown Estate assets.

Illustration (Photo: Pixabay/Creative Commons CC0)

Adopted by Parliament, the Scottish Crown Estate Bill establishes a framework to deliver wider benefits and new opportunities for local control of these assets, while recognizing that some may still need to be managed at the national level.

Crown Estate Scotland, formed in April 2017, manages assets on behalf of Scottish ministers, including agricultural and forestry land, most of the seabed, just under half of the foreshore and some commercial property.

It also manages the rights to offshore renewable energy and gas and carbon dioxide storage out to 200 nautical miles.

Roseanna Cunningham, Land Reform Secretary for Scotland, said: “I believe strongly in maximizing the benefits of the Crown Estate for our communities, which is why I am delighted that Parliament has agreed to open up the possibility for local authorities and communities to take direct control of the management of these assets.

“This bill represents a significant step in reforming the management of the Scottish Crown Estate and in empowering our communities.”

Simon Hodge, Crown Estate Scotland Chief Executive, said: “Since starting operation in April 2017, we’ve worked hard to deliver wider economic, social and environmental value for Scotland, as well as returning profits to the Scottish Government. This includes ambitious proposals for new offshore wind leasing, a scheme to devolve management of land and property to local bodies, a £4.5 million rural investment plan and much more.

“This new legislation will enable us to focus even more on managing our assets in ways that benefits Scotland’s economy, people and environment.”