An action plan has been launched to boost nature-based jobs as Scotland steps up efforts to meet net-zero targets.

NatureScot has published an initial route map to develop the skills and opportunities needed to secure a green recovery from the coronavirus pandemic and transition to net-zero by 2045.

Research has shown that nature-based jobs already make a significant contribution to the Scottish economy, amounting to at least 195,000 jobs or 7.5 per cent of Scotland’s workforce in 2019.

Significant further growth is anticipated alongside increased investment in nature-based solutions to the twin crises of climate change and biodiversity loss, including peatland restoration, green infrastructure, woodland creation and restoration, and blue carbon.

Evidence shows that in order to bring about these changes, the current workforce needs to be expanded and skills and training improved.

The action plan sets out how NatureScot, working with partners, aims to fill the gaps and realise the potential of jobs within the nature-based sector.