SLI trust buys Cairngorm land for carbon plan

Devils Point, Cairngorms

Land has been acquired in the Cairngorms

Standard Life Investments Property Income Trust (SLIPIT) has acquired 1,447 hectares of rough grazing and open moorland in the Cairngorms national park that will be used as part of the company’s carbon strategy. 

The site supports 956 hectares for planting with natural broadleaf trees (about 1.5m trees in total) with approximately 115 hectares for peatland restoration, with the remainder open land to support bio diverse habitats.

SLIPIT, which has paid £7.5m for the land, said it takes its carbon commitment “very seriously”, and believes that strong ESG credentials will be a driver of performance, as well as an agent for good.

“The company is not investing in commercial forestry, but is acquiring a gold standard carbon offset at a fixed price.

Jason Baggaley: significant opportunity

The purchase forms part of a wider strategy to achieve carbon net zero, based primarily on reducing operational carbon at the investment property assets with offsets for residual carbon that cannot be eliminated. It is anticipated that the costs of planting will be met through grant funding. 

Jason Baggaley, fund manager of SLIPIT, said: “SLIPIT has acquired this significant opportunity for reforestation as part of its carbon strategy.

“We believe that being an early mover will give the company an important advantage in future costs for offsetting as society moves to net zero by 2050.

“We anticipate making a couple of further acquisitions, on a smaller scale, to complete this element of the carbon strategy.

“Although the focus is on carbon offsetting the opportunities for wider ecological and net bio diversity gain are also being explored, which is important given changing legislation around development in the UK”.

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