The Scottish Government has announced that shares of funding to help grow nature projects will be available, with the aim of increasing the scale of private investment in the country’s natural capital.
The funding, which amounts to £1.8 million, will be on offer to environmental organisations, community groups, land owners and farmers a new programme of support offering shares up to £240,000 to winning projects. The funding is being delivered by the Scottish Government, alongside NatureScot, the National Lottery Heritage Fund and the Green Finance Institute, with hopes that this investment will bring private funding.
Grants will be offered the projects by way of supporting the development of viable business cases that will bring investment to restore and improve the natural environment. Projects could include woodland creation, marine enhancement and peatland restoration, with the latter being a further focus to the Scottish Government as they look to end the sale of peat in Scotland. Communities also play a role in the success of these projects, as community engagement is must be demonstrated by winning projects.
Mairi McAllen, Minister for Environment and Land Reform, said:
“The Scottish Government has already significantly increased public investment in nature restoration through, for example, our £65 million Nature Restoration Fund.
“But public investment can’t do it alone. The finance gap for nature in Scotland for the next decade has been estimated to be £20 billion – that’s why we are working to find ways to bridge this finance gap through leveraging responsible private finance.
“The Facility for Investment Ready Nature in Scotland programme will enable swifter, easier and scaled up development of nature-based investable projects across the country. It has the potential to grow natural capital markets that reach across rural, urban, terrestrial and marine settings, and to support a wide variety of natural assets and ecosystem services.”