Just transition in land use and agriculture: a discussion paper

This discussion paper is intended to support engagement on a just transition for the land use and agriculture sectors. Building on this engagement, a draft targeted action plan and route map (late 23/24) will outline the key steps to delivering a fair transition.

Long term vision and illustrative journeys

Figure 1.

Bringing the vision to life

While we are delivering the emissions reductions our people and planet need, we should also focus on how we can improve equity, empower our communities, help our businesses innovate and grow, adapt for the changing climate, and ensure that we are delivering for our natural environment.

The proposed draft land use and agriculture just transition vision seeks to provide that focus. This vision is a merger of the Scottish Government's current long-term visions for sustainable land use, agriculture, and forestry.

Draft Vision – A Scotland where we fully recognise, understand and value the importance of our land resources. We have more forests and woodlands, which are sustainably managed, and we have become a global leader in sustainable and regenerative agriculture. Our plans and decisions about land use enable better integration, whilst delivering improved and enduring benefits for nature and climate and enhancing the wellbeing of our nation.

Despite many uncertainties, we know enough about what needs to happen in the coming years to start imagining what sustainable land use in Scotland could look like. We will need to see tree planting rates increase and peatland restoration rates increase dramatically. Emissions from other land uses such as agriculture will also need to fall significantly, alongside ensuring that our farmers and crofters can continue to produce high quality food to be enjoyed both here and around the world. In parallel, we need to deliver environmental goals and balance other demands that will be made of our land. Through figure 1 on the previous page, taken from the Land Use Strategy, we have sought to visualise what these changes may look like using a theoretical 'Scotland now and Scotland future' image.

Illustrative journeys

We intend to include illustrative just transition 'journeys' in the Plan. These will be visual representations of the positive outcomes sought through our actions and ambitions. Building on the landscape approach set out in Scotland's third Land Use Strategy, up to four illustrative landscape journeys will help to bring the transition to life for the reader. During our engagement we would like to hear from those likely to be impacted by the transition to develop more detailed case studies showing what the transition will mean in practice.

Discussion points - We would appreciate feedback on:

  • What are the key things you need to see from the transition?
  • Are there particular aspects that are not encapsulated in the vision that need to be considered?


Email: justtransition@gov.scot

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