Environmental Standards Scotland


Environmental Standards Scotland (ESS) is the new environmental governance body for Scotland. It will ensure that Scotland’s high standards of environmental governance are maintained. ESS is operating on a non-statutory basis, and will be put on a statutory footing once the relevant provisions in the UK withdrawal from the European Union (Continuity) (Scotland) Act 2021 (“the Continuity Act”) are brought into force in autumn 2021.


From the 1 January 2021, ESS began working on a non-statutory basis to:

  • support the work to create statutory governance arrangements
  • provide advice on the performance of public authorities compliance with environmental law;  the effectiveness of how it is implemented and applied, and  ensuring that environmental monitoring and reporting data continues to be collected. In its non-statutory form, ESS can advise Scottish Ministers, and make recommendations within this remit
  • Once ESS becomes statutory, it will be a new, independent public body and will have a range of powers including to issue improvement reports which Scottish Ministers will be obliged to address through improvement plans, and compliance notices with respect to a public authority’s failure to comply with environmental law.


  • Jim Martin (Chair)
  • Richard Dixon
  • Marie Fallon
  • Paul McAleavey
  • Annalisa Savaresi