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Thriving within the resources of one planet - benefits from nature

As Scotland’s environment protection agency, we work every day to protect and enhance Scotland's environment, helping communities and businesses thrive within the resources of our planet. We call this One Planet Prosperity. We are working  directly with businesses that we regulate at the highest level to engage them in the One Planet Prosperity challenge that Scotland needs to meet to be successful.

We are working with individual businesses through Sustainable Growth Agreements and industry sectors to enable them to take into account the ways in which they depend on the natural environment in their investment and operational decisions. These new approaches of working with businesses are part of our One Planet Prosperity Regulatory Strategy.

Natural capital support for businesses and sectors

The natural resources of the planet are increasingly incorporated into business decisions through natural capital assessments, as part of integrated reporting. We are working through the Scottish Forum on Natural Capital to fund trials of the Natural Capital Protocol.The natural capital protocol is a standardised framework for business to identify, measure, and value their impacts and dependencies on the environment.

Examples of SEPA’s work with businesses and sectors

  • Our work with Crown Estates Scotland to trial the natural capital protocol with land based businesses.
  • We are working with Scottish Water through a Sustainable Growth Agreement with them to incorporate social and natural capitals into their sustainable catchment decisions. Through this work, Scottish Water and SEPA are working together to make more sustainable choices over how water quality in river catchments is protected, including in catchments where there are multiple different sectors and multiple waste water discharges contributing to the pressure on water quality.
  • We hosted a Valuing Nature placement from University of Edinburgh to undertake research with businesses that depend on the natural environment for their business success, but may not manage land. This helped us understand the business motivations and challenges in investing in the land management to restore natural capital. The report is available online.
  • In May 2020 SEPA and Scottish Wildlife Trust launched the £1B Challenge Route Map, which plots a path towards unlocking new investment for nature conservation, highlighting nine potential investment opportunities. Riverwoods, a ‘Spotlight Project’ within the £1 Billion Challenge is exploring blended finance delivery models.
  • We are working with partners and helped organise the GEFI Finance for Nature COP26 event in November 2021. Read more about our work with the Scottish Conservation Finance Pioneers Group in developing financial mechanisms and trialling approaches to enable private investment in the protection and restoration of Scotland’s natural capital, or watch the video below.  


Where can I find SEPA data to help with assessments?

You can find out about our data and how to access it on our website. Find out more about Ecosystem Health Indicators on Scotland's environment website - measures to help us understand where action should be taken to restore ecosystem health and associated benefits. 

Data that we hold is available to the public via the Scottish Spatial Data Infrastructure Metadata Catalogue data inventory and .

If you have a specific need for data not currently available via these sources,  please email us.


Contact us for further information.