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Environment - Funding and Grants for Environmental Projects

Funding and Grants

There are a variety of Scottish Government funding sources available for individuals and community groups who are engaged in or are thinking about getting involved in environmental projects. These are outlined below.

Climate Challenge Fund

Climate Challenge Fund

The Climate Challenge Fund is designed to enable communities to come forward with their own solutions to make a significant reduction in carbon emissions.

Projects can involve a range of actions from helping communities to use less energy, walk and cycle more, to local sustainable food production. They can also have an environmental, social and economic dimension to the projects, that give people new skills, improve health, help them to work together or provide better community facilities, but carbon reduction must be at the heart of every proposal and the community at the centre of the decision making.

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Community and Renewable Energy Scheme

The Communities And Renewable Energy Scheme (CARES) is the Scottish Government's initiative for supporting community renewable installations. It provides a network of development officers who can provide free, independent advice and site visits as well as grants for technical studies and installation of equipment. CARES is managed on behalf of the Scottish Government by an independent Scottish charity, Community Energy Scotland. More information (or call 01349 860120).

Community Energy Scotland helps communty groups such as social enterprises and housing associations to develop sustainable energy projects.


Scottish Rural Develpment Programme

Scotland Rural Development Programme (SRDP)

The Scottish Rural Development Programme delivers Pillar 2 of the EU Common Agricultural Policy (CAP).  It funds economic, environmental and social measures for the benefit of rural Scotland.  Further information can be found on the SRDP pages or for detailed scheme guidance through the Rural Payments and Services website.

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Forestry Commission Scotland

Forestry Challenge Funds are administered by Forestry Commission Scotland (FCS) under the Scotland Rural Development Programme (SRDP). Two funds are available: Woods In and Around Towns, and Forestry for People.

Rural Development Contracts - Rural Priorities (RDC - RP): This is an integrated funding mechanism that aims to deliver targeted environmental, social and economic benefits. Grant support for forests and woodlands is delivered through a number of forestry-specific options and through a number of other non-specific options. ( See SRDP)

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Historic Environment Scotland

Historic Environment Scotland provides a number of grant and funding schemes to support bodies and individuals in the protection, education and promotion of the historic environment.

Decisions on grants are made on information gained from extensive public consultation, and are also influenced by the extent to which projects deliver benefits for communities, promote quality, develop knowledge and skills and build capacity for local heritage management.

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Scottish Natural Heritage

Runs eight different grant schemes to help protect and improve Scotland's natural heritage.

Cycling Scotland logo

Cycling Scotland

The aim of the Community Cycling Innovation Fund is to increase the wellbeing of communities across Scotland, enabling more people to have more opportunities to cycle and use cycles to achieve local outcomes. Cycling Scotland's immediate aim is to provide grants for a small number of schemes that demonstrate innovative ways of using cycling and will serve as examples of good practice that can be followed by future projects and can be shared across the whole sector.

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Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA)

Funding received from Scottish Government to restore the condition of Scotland's water environment will be used by SEPA to support partnership projects with third parties.