Actions to deliver RBMP

Working in partnership with other public bodies, industry and land managers, we have a key role to play in protecting and improving the water environment. This includes the regulation of activities that may affect it. We also work with partners to align and integrate RBMP objectives into land use planning and flood risk management. Further information about topic specific actions is available below.

 Action to improve water quality - rural diffuse pollution

The Diffuse Pollution Management Advisory Group (DPMAG) will continue to work in partnership to drive improvements in land use management practices outlined in the rural diffuse pollution plan for Scotland (748kb). The 14 rural diffuse pollution priority catchments are continuing and being expanded to take in 43 new catchments. We will also investigate and confirm the sources of pollution in 72 focus areas and work with relevant partners to assess what measures are appropriate for completion before 2027. Work to tackle diffuse pollution from forestry and acidification is being lead by Forestry Commission Scotland. The Scottish Rural Development Programme (SRDP) and Forestry Grant Schemes will provide financial incentives to deliver this work.

 Action to improve water quality - waste water discharges

In addition to action taken by SEPA through our regulatory role, Scottish Water will improve discharges of waste water that currently contributes to worse than good water quality in six water bodies. They will also complete a study programme, in discussion with SEPA, to confirm which waste water discharges will need to be improved and design the necessary works to address discharges affecting 72 water bodies. This is paid for by customer charges.

 Action to improve physical condition

Working with Scottish Government and other public bodies and responsible authorities, we will significantly expand the effort and funding to improve the physical condition of 309 water bodies. The Scottish Government published new regulations in 2015 to strengthen the delivery framework for this. Improvements will continue to be funded by the Water Environment Fund (WEF). In addition, studies will be carried out to design and plan improvements by 2027. The first planning cycle pilot catchment projects will continue, and the lessons learned from these projects will be applied to align improvements through planning, flood risk management and development opportunities. This will expand upon the work outlined in the supplementary plan Improving the physical condition of Scotland's water environment: a supplementary plan for the river basin management plan (4.7mb).

Action to improve access for fish migration

Working with Scottish Government and other public bodies and responsible authorities, we will significantly expand the effort and funding to improve access for fish migration in 369 water bodies. Rivers and Fisheries Trusts of Scotland (RAFTS) and individual fishery trusts help provide expertise and local knowledge, and where further information is needed, investigations will identify the work that is required to be carried out. When a barrier is assigned to an activity or asset owner, improvements will be sought through the regulatory process, licence review and planning and development opportunities. Those that are not, will continue to be funded by the Water Environment Fund (WEF).

 Actions to improve water flows and levels

We will work with operators of water abstractions and of reservoirs to ensure those operators take the actions needed to improve water flows and levels through the regulatory process in 106 water bodies. Scottish Water will improve flows and levels in 16 water bodies and protected areas that are adversely affected. They will also complete a study programme to design measures to improve flows and levels in a further 122 water bodies. We will work in partnership to increase our certainty in respect of the impact of pressures on flows and levels in further water bodies to confirm whether or not action is needed.

Actions to prevent the spread of invasive non-native species

Working with Scottish Government and other public bodies and responsible authorities, we will continue the approach developed over the period 2009 to 2015 set out in the supplementary plan Managing invasive non-native species in Scotland's water environment: a supplementary plan to the river basin management plan (482mb). This includes biosecurity measures, monitoring, enforcing legislation banning or restricting the possession, sale and release, support for further research aimed at developing effective eradication methods and rapid response for early invasion. Partner organisations will also work with government administrations across the UK to ensure action is taken to reduce the risk of introductions via ship ballast water in line with protocols established by the International Maritime Organisation.

More information about the actions or measures underway, or planned, in your area, is available on the RBMP information sources page.

For further information, please contact us.