The Chair of the Sustainable Development Committee, Cllr Donald Crichton recently met with Mairi Gougeon, Minister for Rural Affairs and Natural Environment to discuss issues around environmental designations.
The Comhairle is actively seeking a more appropriate balance between environmental and community development.
Chair of the Sustainable Development Committee, Cllr Donald Crichton said,
“I reiterated to the Minister for Rural Affairs and Natural Environment the concerns of the catching and processing sectors around the measures for the Sound of Barra and their clear view that the measures would result in the loss of both fishing jobs and onshore processing jobs.
We discussed the process whereby prospective candidate areas for designation are identified and how the community feels disenfranchised from these approaches and feel as if designations are simply imposed upon them.
The Comhairle’s position is that we are looking for a more appropriate balance between environmental and economic/community development and that we should be jointly exploring innovation around environmental designations to allow greater levels of community input and control.
It was agreed that officials from the Comhairle and Marine Scotland should meet to explore opportunities and report back in due course. I am hopeful therefore that we will now see progress and improvement this area.”