The Revive Coalition for grouse moor reform has published its latest report, this time produced by coalition member Common Weal – a ‘think and do tank’ campaigning for social and economic equality in Scotland.
The new report, ‘Work the Land: The employment potential of land reform’ examines how alternative uses of Scotland’s rural land compares in job-creation potential with its current uses. It concludes that tens of thousands of jobs could be created if land was used for the public good and if communities and individuals looking to start land-based businesses could get access to land.
So when we’re told that without grouse moors, the fragile rural economy would collapse…….
From Common Weal:
This new report looks at ten possible new or expanded rural industries – land management, wildlife management, commercial forestry, wood processing, deer stalking/venison production, horticulture, crofting, energy engineering, housebuilding and ecotourism. For each it estimates the maximum amount of employment which could be created and typical incomes for those jobs and it compares this to current use. All but crofting (which is best considered a supplementary income) create higher rural incomes than current use as shooting estates and hill farming. And while it is not possible to sum up the jobs potential to get a single total (as some represent alternative possible uses of the same land), it comes to tens of thousands of potential jobs.
And that’s only the direct jobs. It doesn’t include the large number of indirect and secondary jobs which would also be created in supply chains, services, retail and leisure, public services and as a result of growing communities. Nor does it include the potential for existing business expansion, home-working relocation and job start-up entirely unrelated to these ten job types which would be made possible as a result of significantly expanded housing availability. And of course it doesn’t include the sheer difference growing, thriving rural communities would make to the people who live there.
This is the first of three major reports on land reform in Scotland by Common Weal. The next report (on exactly how Scotland can achieve real land reform quickly) will be launched tomorrow.
Download the new report here: