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South Scotland Biosphere excellence

By Fiona Reid
South Scotland Biosphere excellence

GALLOWAY and Southern Ayrshire UNESCO Biosphere were paid a visit by three high individuals to update them on their progress.

Minister for Rural Affairs Mairi Gougeon, MSP Emma Harper and Chair of the Scottish Enterprise Agency Russell Griggs, all attended to let them know how the Biosphere is demonstrating excellence in addressing the climate emergency and biodiversity challenges.

The visit was hosted by chair of the Biosphere Joan Mitchell and co-ordinator Ed Forrest at Kirroughtree Galloway Forest Park near Newton Stewart last month.

This group heard about the progress of the Galloway and Southern Ayrshire UNESCO Biosphere over the last few years, on the importance of sustainability and how UNESCO Biospheres are the only internationally recognised designation for a region that can demonstrate such excellence.

Sustainability combines the tackling of economic, social and environmental challenges in the hopes that future generations will still be able to lead a healthy and prosperous life in the region.

They discussed the international partnerships the Biosphere team have been forming how the sharing of best practice can help local businesses and communities in Scotland.

With future funding the Biosphere hope to be able to grow the team and that would help them pioneer a new way of working in South West Scotland that would bring together a range of different sectors from Community, Economy, Environment, Culture, Health and Education.

Natural Environment Minister Mairi Gougeon said: “The Galloway and Southern Ayrshire UNESCO Biosphere is a wonderful natural asset for the southwest of Scotland. Its stunning landscapes, wildlife and cultural heritage make it uniquely placed to engage local communities – and those from further afield – in protecting our natural environment.

“I appreciated the opportunity to meet with the team at the biosphere and learn more about their vital work. The biosphere deserves the international recognition it receives as a world class place for people and nature. I look forward to it continuing to play an important role in tackling climate change and protecting the wonderful and unique biodiversity in this special part of rural Scotland.”


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