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Funding boost announced to help tackle coastal erosion in Ayrshire

Posted on 2 Feb 2024


North Ayrshire Council is to benefit from funding as part of Scottish Government support to councils to adapt to coastal change and protect against coastal erosion.

A Council project is one of ten case studies to receive a share of £1.05m from the Scottish Government’s Coastal Change Adaptation Programme, and forms part of £12m committed for coastal change adaptation during the course of this Parliament.

The ten case studies will begin in 2024/25 and will highlight good practice across Scotland.

In partnership with South Ayrshire Council, North Ayrshire Council will replace the adopted Ayrshire Shoreline Management Plan (SMP) with a Coastal Change Adaptation Plan.

The large-scale SMP was adopted by both local authorities in 2018 to assess the risks associated with coastal processes.

It extended from Skelmorlie to the Galloway Burn on the north-east edge of Loch Ryan and included Arran and Great Cumbrae.

Councillor Tony Gurney, North Ayrshire Council’s Cabinet Member for Green Environment and Economy, said: “As a local authority, we have an ambitious vision for tackling climate change.

“We recently unveiled our new Sustainable North Ayrshire Strategy for 2024-2027. This outlines how we are working towards fulfilling our commitment to reaching net zero carbon emissions by 2030.

“The planet is facing a climate – and nature – crisis and we are fully focused on doing everything we possibly can to help halt biodiversity loss across North Ayrshire and be Nature Positive by 2030.

“Everyone can play a part, no matter how small, in working towards net zero. And we welcome this Scottish Government funding for the Coastal Change Adaptation Plan.”

Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Net Zero and Just Transition Mairi McAllan has highlighted the need for action now on coastal erosion.

She said: “The climate emergency is not a distant threat - it is with us today. We need to start adapting our coast to sea level rise and the risk from coastal erosion.

“So, I’m very pleased that local authorities are seizing the opportunity to do this essential work, with their local communities being key partners.

“These case studies will be an important source of knowledge to share with others across Scotland and to help us all take forward projects in the future.

“Later this month we will publish a draft of our ambitious new National Adaptation Plan to address the climate risks facing Scotland. 

“We’re already bringing forward measures to help protect homes, the natural environment and agriculture. 

“And we’re providing £150 million of extra funding, on top of our annual £42m funding, for flood risk management over the course of this Parliament and consulting on a new Flood Resilience Strategy this year.”

 You can find out more about North Ayrshire Council’s Sustainable North Ayrshire Strategy here: Council's net-zero ambitions are laid out in new plan to help tackle climate change (north-ayrshire.gov.uk)

And there is further information about the Ayrshire SMP here: Ayrshire Shoreline Management Plan (north-ayrshire.gov.uk)