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About The Partnership Plan

The National Park is a unique place and a special landscape. Things are, and should be, done differently here to maximise the benefits that can be provided for nature, climate and people.

The impacts of the twin global crises of the climate emergency and nature loss are happening here and now in the National Park, so it is not enough to simply do what we have always done.

We must transform the way each of us live, work in, visit and look after the National Park to achieve a more positive, sustainable future for us all.

The National Park Partnership Plan 2024-2029 sets out a long-term vision for the future of the National Park and the steps we will take together over the next five years to achieve it.

The Plan guides the work of not just the National Park Authority but of all the organisations and other partners involved in managing the area and making the overarching vision a reality.

 

Our Vision for 2045

By 2045, the National Park is a thriving place that is nature positive and carbon negative.

Our Vision

Our Vision for 2045

By 2045, the National Park is a thriving place that is nature positive and carbon negative.

Why here, why now?

The National Park is losing nature at a scale never experienced before and increasingly feeling the impacts of climate change. These twin crises are impacting our environment, our communities, our economy and tourism.

The uncomfortable truth:

  • Nearly a fifth of even our most special, designated sites for nature are in decline.
  • Over 50,000 hectares of peatlands may currently be degraded, releasing greenhouse gases, and contributing towards climate warming. Future Nature Route Map.
  • Adaptation Scotland estimates that winter rainfall in Scotland will increase by 8-19% over the coming decades with rainfall events becoming more intense all year round, leading to an increase in flooding.
  • The dominance of car travel is a major contributor to carbon emissions here. 79% of visitors arrive in the National Park by car and 73% explore the area by car according to our 2019/20 Visitor Survey. If there is no intervention, car-based travel is predicted to increase nationally by 40% by 2037.
  • The National Park is one of the most expensive places in Scotland to buy a house. National Park Housing Market Research 2022.
  • 75% of National Park households cannot afford average house prices and 43% cannot afford lower value house prices. National Park Housing Market Research 2022.
  • The National Park’s population has a lower proportion of young and working-aged people compared to the national average. National Records of Scotland NPPP
  • Invasive non-native species remain widespread Future Nature Route Map.
  • Approximately 50% of water bodies may not be in good ecological condition Future Nature Route Map.

As a special landscape, the National Park has not only an opportunity, but arguably a duty, to do more to address these challenges to benefit both the place itself and Scotland as a whole.

Native woodland featuring silver birch

Tackling the nature and climate crises is not separate to supporting the rural economy and our communities. In fact, working together to address these will provide a range of wider benefits for the National Park and its people, including more investment, business, and employment opportunities.

How this Plan was developed

The Partnership Plan was developed following extensive dialogue with a wide range of partners and stakeholders and a public consultation. It involved facing up to some uncomfortable truths and looking at these from a variety of perspectives to find answers together.

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