Skip to main content

Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-19479: Rachael Hamilton (Ettrick, Roxburgh and Berwickshire)

Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party

Date lodged: 18 October 2018

To ask the Scottish Government what action it is taking to control the spread of larch disease in the Scottish Borders.

Answered by: Mairi Gougeon 27 November 2018

Scottish Government is maintaining its investment in the extensive programme of surveillance, monitoring, research, and rapid action to help slow down the spread and reduce the impact of Phytophthora ramorum on larch. Our surveillance programme has ensured early detection of new outbreaks, and rapid action via statutory measures.

Rapid action was taken by the Scottish Government through Forestry Commission Scotland to issue the required Statutory Plant Health Notices, focussing on those areas confirmed as having the disease furthest away from the focus of infection in the south of Scotland. Close liaison with Confor and the wider forestry sector, through the Scottish Tree Health Advisory Group and the P. ramorum Working Group, has been maintained to ensure that appropriate and proportionate management action continues to be implemented.

Continued research into this pathogen remains a priority for the Scottish Government, and will be continued as part of the future cross-border arrangements agreed as part of the programme of work to complete the devolution of forestry.