Article: Regulating Long-Term Impacts on the Scottish Landscape: Quarries, Dams and Forestry
Many projects creating long-term impacts that are visible on the Scottish landscape today were authorised at a time when environmental sensitivities were less well developed. This article examines the development of the regulatory mechanisms for three major landscape impacts: mineral workings, hydro-electric schemes and forestry. Today, the requirement for environmental impact assessment provides one common element in all three cases, but there are marked differences. The most notable is the control of most forestry planting by economic instruments rather than any formal authorisation procedure. Given the long-term effects of these projects on the landscape, a major issue is the extent to which authorisations can be reviewed to reflect modern concerns and revised in future as physical conditions or public knowledge or attitudes change. Only in relation to mineral workings does the legislative scheme make provision for this.