Agriculture and the Environment IX

Activity: Participating in or organising an eventParticipation in conference


Sustainable economic growth is the “Single Purpose” of the Scottish Government. It is highly
dependent upon the natural environment, which provides the resources essential for life and a
wide range of other activities and benefits that underpin human health, wellbeing and economic
and social prosperity. Beneath the over-riding “Single Purpose”, the Scottish Government has
identified a number of key objectives for their strategy: one is the creation of a Greener
Scotland and to this end a suite of EU, UK, Scottish and local government policies is directed
towards maintaining and enhancing the natural environment.
Government policy is therefore increasingly directed towards obtaining multiple benefits.
These can range from achieving a balance between human well-being and other broad
economic, environmental and social outcomes to addressing the potential impact of climate
change and managing the ability of our environmental resources to mitigate and adapt to
climate change. The multiplicity and complexity of the underlying issues requires a framework
within which the interactions between different resources, outputs and external and internal
drivers can be considered.
Adopting an ecosystem approach provides such a framework for the sustainable management
of environmental resources. It requires consideration of the effects of actions on every element
of an ecosystem, based on the recognition that all elements of an ecosystem are ultimately
inter-linked. The potential of the ecosystem approach as a framework for the assessment,
planning and management of environmental resources has been internationally recognised. It
has formed the basis of the UN Millennium Ecosystem Assessment; it was the raison d’etre
behind the global study of The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB) project;
and it was used at UK level for the recently completed National Ecosystem Assessment. The
Scottish Government have also embedded an ecosystem and ecosystems services approach into
their recently published Land Use Strategy Action Plan.
Period3 Apr 20124 Apr 2012
Event typeConference
Conference number9
LocationEdinburgh, United KingdomShow on map
Degree of RecognitionInternational


  • Ecosystem approach
  • ecosystem services
  • Landscape