The National Lottery Heritage Fund is embarking on a new funding collaboration which will help organisations explore innovative funding models across Scotland’s nature sector. Alongside funds from NatureScot and Esmee Fairbairn, the Heritage Fund is investing £250,000 into Investment Ready Nature Scotland.

The partnership will help organisations develop projects that use private investment and new funding models to help finance the restoration of the Scottish natural environment.

Supporting the future of Scotland’s natural environment

Each project awarded through the scheme will contribute to restoring nature, adapting to and mitigating climate change and improving opportunities for people to access and enjoy their natural heritage. Investment Ready Nature Scotland will also help organisations build capability to attract financial investment, address barriers to investment and build replicable and scalable business models.

The Heritage Fund has awarded the scheme £250,000 as part of its commitment to landscapes and nature and innovation partnerships.

Public and philanthropic funding alone will not be sufficient to restore nature. The Green Finance Institute estimates that between £15 billion and £27 billion, in addition to current public funding, is needed over the next 10 years to restore nature across Scotland. Much of this will have to come from the private sector. Whilst this remains an ambitious target, restoring and protecting naturally functioning ecosystems has repeatedly been shown to provide cost-effective and durable solutions that often provide better value than grey technology and engineering.

Investment Ready Nature in Scotland addresses two of the four major barriers to scaling investment in UK nature identified by the Financing Nature Recovery UK initiative: -

  • Limited sources of revenue – Nature is systemically undervalued, and many ecosystem services are public goods, meaning there is no incentive to pay.
  • Limited pipeline and scale – Limited capacity in the supply chain mean that projects cannot be aggregated to a scale that would attract investment.

Selected projects will:

  • Be consistent with the Scottish Government’s Interim Principles for Responsible Investment in Natural Capital
  • Contribute to restoring nature, mitigating and adapting to climate change through nature-based solutions and improving opportunities for people to access and enjoy nature.
  • Develop replicable and scalable business models that derive revenue from natural capital and biodiversity and could be used to attract and repay the investment.

Visit NatureScot’s website for further information about the new investment scheme.