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25 July 2023

Nature restoration projects called on to apply for £65m fund

NatureScot opened applications for the Nature Restoration Fund this week, with £65 million made available from Scottish Government.

The fund was created to support projects that take practical steps to restore Scotland’s natural environment and tackle climate change and biodiversity loss.

Announced at COP26 in 2021, over 125 projects in Scotland have already been awarded an estimated £20 million through the fund managed by NatureScot.

With no closing date for applications, the agency is accepting Expressions of Interest for projects focused on species and habitat restoration, marine and coastal protection, and eradication of invasive, non-native species.

Development phase funding is also available to help large projects in their early stages to plan and research, addressing one of the sector’s capacity gaps.

Projects can apply for funding through two streams; the Helping Nature stream supports nature restoration projects with grants between £25,000 and £250,000 while the Transforming Nature stream supports landscape-scale projects with grants over £250,000.

The most recent Transforming Nature round saw over thirty projects awarded a total of £7.6 million, including multi-year projects running to 2026. One of the projects given funding was Argyll & the Isles Coast & Countryside Trust, which was awarded £214,000 for the Saving Argyll’s Rainforest project focused on improving woodland in the area.

Colin Galbraith, Chair at NatureScot, said:

“As we tackle the devastating nature and climate crisis, it’s crucial we take bold action to halt and reverse biodiversity loss and reduce the effects of climate change.

“Through the Nature Restoration Fund, we are supporting projects that have the potential to make a tangible difference to our future and this new round of funding will allow us to support even more positive action across Scotland.”

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