The Scottish Crofting Federation (SCF) has expressed disappointment at the Scottish Government’s decision to impose a marine Special Area of Conservation (mSAC) on the Sound of Barra, in the face of strong local opposition.
Roddy MacDonald, an SCF Director, said: “Maintaining Scotland's natural environment is essential work and the network of protected areas that the Government is obliged to designate under European law is part of that effort. However, environmental protection, as with economic development, should be carried out in an appropriate manner to ensure sustainability. The Scottish Government has failed to achieve the consent and support of the islanders for the Sound of Barra designation, leaving a void in the bigger picture. SCF is disappointed that the Minister has chosen to push ahead with it in the face of local opposition rather than working for local buy-in. It’s a decision that does not reflect well on the principles of local participation and it strengthens the case that we have made for root and branch reform of the way the Scottish Government tries to look after the nature of Scotland."