26 February 2014
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The Land Information Search (LIS) is a user-friendly, map-based tool that allows people to search for data relating to an area of land they have identified and wish to know more about.
The development of the LIS is the first joint venture of its kind, with staff from the Forestry Commission Scotland (FCS) and Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) working together with staff from the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) who are funded by the European Commission LIFE+ programme to work on the Scotland's Environment website project.
The practical uses for the LIS tool include being able to search for sites of special scientific interest, monuments and buildings, native woodlands and waterways. It is particularly useful to farmers, estate and land owners, estate agents, Scottish Rural Development Programme applicants or those seeking grants, and those involved with rural development contracts or felling licences.
It will also be of interest to a wider audience, such as walkers, schoolchildren, students and anyone interested in finding out about features in and around particular locations across Scotland.
The ability to view information against a backdrop of either Ordnance Survey data or aerial photography enables users to visualise sites and locations in relation to identifiable structures and buildings, roads and natural features. The practical nature of the LIS tool also allows users to define an area of interest either by simply placing a point on the map, or by drawing more detailed shapes to cover the area of interest.
Howard Davies, Forestry Commission Scotland's GIS Delivery Manager, who has helped oversee the development of the LIS tool, said:
It has been a major focus of work for us over the past 12 months so it is great to see it available on Scotland's Environment website pages.
"The LIS will be extremely useful to land management professionals but it is also a fantastic tool for anyone with an interest in their local - and not so local – area.
"There is also a lot of potential for the LIS to be used in schools and colleges as a quick and easy way to learn more about environmental issues affecting the land."
Ron Macdonald, Director of Policy and Advice at Scottish Natural Heritage added:
This new website search tool is simple and easy to use. It makes it practical for land managers, people applying for grants to their local communities and others to learn more about their area.
"This new LIS tool is the result of development by SNH, FCS and SEPA and other government agencies. I am delighted it has been launched and I am sure it will help people in their search for information about Scotland's rich natural environment."
David Pirie, SEPA Executive Director and Project Executive for the Scotland's Environment website project in SEPA, said:
The new Land Information Search (LIS) tool is the result of input and development work carried out by the various agencies involved and we expect the tool to be a much-used and successful addition to Scotland's Environment web platform.
"The use of the most up-to-date published data, in conjunction with improved delivery and graphics, will enhance the user experience and ultimately help those using this tool speed up their planning and decision making around land use. "
Note to editors
- SEPA manages the Scotland's Environment Web project on behalf of a partnership of other key environmental organisations in Scotland http://www.environment.scotland.gov.uk/about-us/scotlands-environment-partners/
- The website provides a comprehensive insight into the condition of Scotland's environment by providing access to data and information held and managed by a wide range of organisations across Scotland.
- SEPA has received funding support from the European Commission LIFE+ funding programme to support the delivery of a range of multi-agency collaborative initiatives that will provide a trusted gateway to data and information about the environment, and involve Scotland's Citizens in discussion, monitoring and action to protect and improve the environment.
- The LIFE programme is the European Union's funding instrument for the environment, which contributes to the implementation, updating and development of EU environmental policy and legislation.
- For further information about the Scotland's Environment Web LIFE funded project : http://www.environment.scotland.gov.uk/about-us/lifeplus-project/