Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Update for Members

Langholm - November 2013
SNH Sharing Good Practice events

Following a meeting at Battleby, last Friday, the aim is now to work up more detailed proposals for  events to cover hill tracks and peatland restoration.

The hill tracks events will be developed in conjunction with SL&E and SNH.

The peatland events will link to the Green Stimulus Peatland Restoration Project and will help to deliver this project, as well as raising awareness about peatland restoration issues.

Moorland Management Best Practice Guidance

As an extension of the Sharing Good Practice work, discussions are taking place about developing best practice guidance for moorland management.  Long servers on the Forum will recognise that this would be a development of the 'Principles of Moorland Management' that the Forum published in 2003.

A possible process is that the Forum might prepare draft guidance and then road test this through events with stakeholders, and these events might cover one or several topics.

The plan at present is to develop an outline proposal for discussion at the Forum meeting that will be held in February 2014.  If agreed, the proposal would be worked up into something more detailed for discussion at the Summer meeting.

"Species Interactions"

My efforts to organise the planning meeting quickly have been frustrated by lack of availability and Friday, 17th January is now looking favourite.  It should still be possible to produce some sensible proposals in time for the next Chairman's Working Group and Forum meetings on 7th & 28th February, respectively.

Note that I have adopted Species Interactions as the working title for this work, in preference to Species Solutions, as I believe it to better represent what we are trying to achieve in this phase of the work. This can be subject to further change during the development phase.

Meetings with Scottish Government

Meeting with the Minister - January 2014.  Lord Lindsay hopes to meet the Minister for Environment, Paul Wheelhouse, MSP, to present the Annual Report to him and provide an update about the work of the Forum.

A meeting with Bob McIntosh, Director Environment & Forestry is being proposed for January or February.

Discussion are taking place about a meeting for the Forum with the Minister for Environment, Paul Wheelhouse, MSP, somewhere in the Borders, in June,

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