Nature Conservation (Scotland) Act 2004

JurisdictionScotland
Citation2004 asp 6


Nature Conservation (Scotland) Act 2004

asp 6

The Bill for this Act of the Scottish Parliament was passed by the Parliament on 5th May 2004 and received Royal Assent on 11th June 2004

An Act of the Scottish Parliament to make provision in relation to the conservation of biodiversity; to make further provision in relation to the conservation and enhancement of Scotland's natural features; to amend the law relating to the protection of certain birds, animals and plants; and for connected purposes.

1 Biodiversity

Part 1

Biodiversity

S-1 Duty to further the conservation of biodiversity

1 Duty to further the conservation of biodiversity

1 Duty to further the conservation of biodiversity

(1) It is the duty of every public body and office-holder, in exercising any functions, to further the conservation of biodiversity so far as is consistent with the proper exercise of those functions.

(2) In complying with the duty imposed by subsection (1) a body or office-holder must have regard to—

(a) any strategy designated under section 2(1), and

(b) the United Nations Environmental Programme Convention on Biological Diversity of 5 June 1992 as amended from time to time (or any United Nations Convention replacing that Convention).

S-2 Scottish Biodiversity Strategy

2 Scottish Biodiversity Strategy

2 Scottish Biodiversity Strategy

(1) The Scottish Ministers must designate as the Scottish Biodiversity Strategy one or more strategies for the conservation of biodiversity (whether prepared by them or by one or more other persons).

(2) The Scottish Ministers must publish any strategy so designated in such manner (including on the internet or by other electronic means) as they think fit.

(3) A strategy so designated may include different provision for different cases or types of case.

(4) Within one year of a strategy being so designated, the Scottish Ministers must publish, in such manner (including on the internet or by other electronic means) as they think fit, lists of—

(a) species of flora and fauna, and

(b) habitats,

considered by the Scottish Ministers to be of principal importance for the purpose mentioned in section 1(1).

(5) The Scottish Ministers may from time to time review any lists published under subsection (4).

(6) Where, following such a review, the Scottish Ministers consider that any such lists should be revised they must publish revised lists under that subsection.

(7) The Scottish Ministers must, within 3 years of the date on which—

(a) they first designate a Scottish Biodiversity Strategy, or

(b) a report was last laid under this subsection,

lay a report before the Scottish Parliament regarding the implementation of the strategy.

2 Conservation and enhancement of natural features

Part 2

Conservation and enhancement of natural features

Chapter 1

Sites of special scientific interest

Notification of sites of special scientific interest

Notification of sites of special scientific interest

S-3 Duty to give notification of sites of special scientific interest

3 Duty to give notification of sites of special scientific interest

3 Duty to give notification of sites of special scientific interest

(1) Scottish Natural Heritage (‘SNH’) must, where it considers that any land is of special interest by reason of any of its natural features, notify that fact to the persons mentioned in section 48(2) (‘the interested parties’).

(2) References in this Act to a ‘natural feature’ of land are references to any of its flora or fauna or geological or geomorphological features.

(3) In determining for the purposes of subsection (1) whether any land is of special interest SNH must have regard to—

(a) the extent to which giving notification under that subsection in relation to the land would contribute towards the development of a series of sites of special scientific interest in Scotland representative of the diversity and geographic range of—

(i) Scotland's natural features,

(ii) the natural features of Great Britain,

(iii) the natural features of the member States, and

(b) any guidance issued or approved under subsection (1) of section 54 so far as containing information of the description referred to in subsection (2)(a) of that section.

(4) A notification under subsection (1) must be accompanied by—

(a) a document which—

(i) describes the land to which the notification relates,

(ii) specifies the natural feature by reason of which SNH considers the land to be of special interest,

(iii) specifies acts or omissions which appear to SNH to be likely to damage that natural feature, and

(iv) contains such other information as SNH thinks fit, and

(b) a map on which the land is delineated.

(5) The notification, document and map referred to in subsection (4) are in this Act together referred to, in relation to the land in question, as the ‘SSSI notification’.

(6) An SSSI notification has effect from the date on which it is given; and the land in question is, until the notification ceases to have effect, to be known as a ‘site of special scientific interest’.

(7) Each act or omission specified in an SSSI notification by virtue of subsection (4)(a)(iii) is, in relation to the site of special scientific interest, in this Act referred to as an ‘operation requiring consent’.

S-4 Site management statements

4 Site management statements

4 Site management statements

(1) An SSSI notification must be accompanied by a site management statement.

(2) A site management statement is a statement prepared by SNH which—

(a) provides guidance to owners and occupiers of land within a site of special scientific interest as to how the natural feature specified in the SSSI notification should be conserved or enhanced, and

(b) contains such other information in relation to the site of special scientific interest as SNH thinks fit.

(3) That information may include information which promotes understanding and enjoyment by the public of the natural feature specified in the SSSI notification.

(4) SNH may, at any time during which an SSSI notification has effect—

(a) on the request of any owner or occupier of land within the site of special scientific interest, or

(b) of its own accord,

review and, if it thinks fit, revise the site management statement.

(5) SNH must provide a copy of any statement so revised to every owner and occupier of land within the site of special scientific interest.

S-5 Enlargement of sites of special scientific interest

5 Enlargement of sites of special scientific interest

5 Enlargement of sites of special scientific interest

(1) Where SNH considers that if land (‘extra land’) which is contiguous to or which it considers to be otherwise associated with a site of special scientific interest were combined with the site, the combined land would be of special interest by reason of any of its natural features, it may notify that fact to the persons who are the interested parties in relation to the extra land.

(2) Subsection (3) of section 3 applies for the purposes of subsection (1) of this section as it applies for the purposes of subsection (1) of that section.

(3) Sections 3(4) and 4(1) and (2) apply in relation to a notification of extra land under subsection (1) of this section as they apply to a notification under section 3(1), but as if—

(a) in section 3(4)(a)(ii), the reference to the land were a reference to the combined land,

(b) in section 4(2), the references to a site of special scientific interest were references to the combined land.

(4) Representations under schedule 1 with respect to a notification under subsection (1) are not competent so far as they relate to the original SSSI notification.

S-6 Review of operations requiring consent

6 Review of operations requiring consent

6 Review of operations requiring consent

(1) SNH—

(a) must, on the request of any owner or occupier of land within a site of special scientific interest,

(b) may when it thinks fit,

review the operations requiring consent specified in an SSSI notification.

(2) SNH must not carry out—

(a) the first such review within 6 years of the date on which the SSSI notification was given,

(b) any subsequent such review within 6 years of the previous review,

except where the review is carried out under subsection (1)(b) and SNH has obtained the agreement of every owner and occupier of land within the site of special scientific interest.

(3) Such agreement is obtained if SNH gives notice of a proposed review to every owner and occupier of land within the site of special scientific interest and—

(a) every such person consents to SNH carrying out the review, or

(b) no reasonable objection by any such person to the carrying out of the review is received by SNH within 28 days of the date on which the notice was given.

(4) SNH may, in carrying out a review of operations requiring consent, also review any consents to carry out the operations given on applications under section 16(2).

(5) If, on completion of a review, SNH is of the opinion that the SSSI notification should be amended by—

(a) adding to the operations requiring consent specified in it,

(b) modifying the description of any operation requiring consent so specified, or

(c) removing any operation requiring consent so specified from it,

SNH must amend the SSSI notification by giving notification of the amendment to every owner and occupier of land within the site of special scientific interest.

S-7 Addition or modification of operations requiring consent: urgent

7 ...

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