£31.5m for 500 environment and forestry projects

£31.5m funding is to go towards 500 agri-environment and forestry projects that will support government priorities to improve water quality, mitigate climate change and protect biodiversity.

These projects include a biodiversity plan to protect threatened wildlife on the Isle of Lewis and the creation of new woodland at Coshogle Site of Special Scientific Interest in Dumfries and Galloway.

It will safeguard and create hundreds of jobs and provide much needed help to businesses in some of Scotland's most remote rural areas.

This latest round of funding brings the total number of projects approved by Rural Priorities to 5,350 since the scheme's launch in 2008, worth some £398m.

Rural Secretary Richard Lochhead said: "This latest round of funding focuses on vital agri-environment and forestry projects which will help to meet climate change targets and protect and enhance Scotland's unique biodiversity and landscape."

"By targeting this round at these projects we are spreading out Rural Priorities to benefit as many applicants as possible over the course of the SRDP, despite severe public spending cuts imposed on Scotland by Westminster."

Further information:
Scottish Government