Land estates in Scotland: Perceptions of climate change and climate policy Implications for future policy support

Most of Scotland’s rural land – 83% – belongs to private estates. In 2012 half of this land was owned by only 432 individuals or companies. As a result, land estates can be very large and carry out a range of land uses. 

Large land estates used for a variety of activities are likely to be affected by a range of climate change impacts. However, this also provides land estates managers with opportunities and flexibility to adapt to climate change.

Understanding how land estate managers are seeking to integrate adaptation and mitigation via changes in land-use or changes in business and income generation provides valuable insight into how government policies are supporting or hindering progress.

This paper is based on interviews with land estate managers regarding how they see the need for climate change adaptation. It also discusses how policy support for these estates can be more effective in the future.