Scottish Crown Estate strategic management plan - ICIA not required: declaration

Scottish Ministers' decision to not carry out a full Island Communities Impact Assessment (ICIA) at this moment in time.

Island Communities Impact Assessment - Scottish Crown Estate: draft Strategic Management Plan

Title of policy/ practice/ strategy/ legislation etc.

Scottish Crown Estate: draft Strategic Management Plan

Lead Minister

Roseanna Cunningham, Cabinet Secretary for Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform

Lead official

David Mallon

Directorate Division


Marine Scotland
Aquaculture, Crown Estate, Recreational Fisheries, EMFF and Europe Division (ACRE)

Crown Estate Strategy Unit

1. Stage 1 – Planning

What is the main aim of your policy/strategy?

The scope of this draft Strategic Management Plan (the Plan) and consultation covers the future management of the Scottish Crown Estate. The Scottish Crown Estate is a set of ancient rights, land and property which are owned by the Monarch. The draft Strategic Management Plan has been prepared in line with the Scottish Crown Estate Act 2019. Under section 23(1) of the Scottish Crown Estate Act 2019, the Scottish Ministers must, no later than the end of each 5 year period, review the Strategic Management Plan.

The Scottish Crown Estate includes:

  • 37,000 hectares of rural land with agricultural tenancies, residential and commercial properties and forestry on four rural estates (Glenlivet, Fochabers, Applegirth and Whitehill);
  • Rights to fish wild salmon and sea trout in river and coastal areas;
  • Rights to naturally-occurring gold and silver across most of Scotland;
  • Coastal rights for just under half the foreshore around Scotland. 5,800 moorings and some ports and harbours;
  • Leasing of virtually all seabed out to 12 nautical miles covering some 750 fish farming sites at the present time and agreements with cables & pipeline operators and equivalent rights to the seabed out to 200 nautical miles;
  • The rights to offshore renewable energy and gas and carbon dioxide storage out to 200 nautical miles;
  • Retail and office units at 39-41 George Street Edinburgh.

The Strategic Management Plan presents Scottish Ministers’ 5 year vision for the Scottish Crown Estate. It sets out the objectives, priorities and policies as well as how those align with the Scottish Government’s wider objectives, priorities and policies such as Climate Change, Energy, National Marine Plan, Economic Strategy and the National Performance Framework. One of the Plan’s primary objectives is to deliver sustainable and inclusive economic growth in the way in which the Estate is managed. 

2. Stage 2 – Evidence

What impact will your policy/strategy/plan have on island communities?

The first Strategic Management Plan for the Scottish Crown Estate is a high level document. It aims to guide, support and inform all those who live on or near to Scottish Crown Estate assets, current managers and those who wish to become managers of individual assets in the future. 

The Strategic Management Plan will provide a framework to ensure that managers maintain and seek to enhance the capital value and revenue from the Scottish Crown Estate assets in a way that supports sustainable development, and economic development, regeneration, social and environmental well-being. More widely, to ensure that the Strategic Management Plan contributes to the successful delivery of Scottish Government policies and delivery of the National Performance Framework. 

The Strategic Management Plan recognises that strategies in relation to the management of the assets will consider the potential for delivering benefits to island communities. Accordingly an assessment is being carried out under the Islands (Scotland) Act 2018 even though the relevant section of that Act has not yet been commenced. 

We do not anticipate that the Strategic Management Plan will have a direct or negative impact on island communities and in fact the Plan is likely to have an indirect positive impact. However, any such impacts will flow from how individual managers take decisions within the overall legal framework once it has been introduced. This includes the development of individual Management Plans. 

It is expected that each Corporate Plan or Management Plan prepared by a manager of a Scottish Crown Estate asset will include measures which will seek to ensure that the needs of island communities are met where a manager is responsible for assets in any of the island communities. 

3. What consultation have you had with the island communities on your policy/strategy/plan?

There has been a significant amount of discussion and consultation on the future management of the Scottish Crown Estate, including bilateral discussions with the island councils. Scottish Ministers will be running a twelve-week public consultation on the draft Strategic Management Plan for the Scottish Crown Estate from August to November 2019. When the consultation results have been analysed and considered, we will then produce the final Island Communities Impact Assessment.

We will liaise with the Scottish Government Island policy leads with a view to sending a consultation link to the key groups/communities they engaged with during the 2019 National Islands Plan and Island Communities Impact Assessments consultation. Although the Strategic Management Plan consultation is not aimed specifically at island communities, we wish to highlight the consultation to them and hopefully encourage their response. 

4. Stage 4 – Decision

Does your policy/strategy/plan require an Island Communities Impact Assessment?

The objectives, priorities and policies within the Strategic Management Plan apply to all prospective managers of Scottish Crown Estate assets. Corporate Plan or Management Plans required under the Scottish Crown Estate Act 2019 will consider the potential for delivering benefits to island communities and an assessment of possible impacts will be completed as necessary.

We therefore do not believe an Island Communities Impact Assessment is required in relation to the draft Strategic Management Plan. The Plan is not likely to impact island communities in a significantly different way and makes no distinction to the various communities across Scotland.

Sign off of the Island Communities Impact Assessment template

Name: Mike Palmer

Job title: Deputy Director
Marine Scotland: Aquaculture, Crown Estate, Recreational Fisheries, EMFF and Europe
22 August 2019



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