River basin management planning in Scotland: statement of consultation steps for the third plans

Closed 22 Dec 2018

Opened 22 Jun 2018

Feedback updated 9 Nov 2021

We asked

SEPA ran a consultation about the steps we will take to engage stakeholders in the preparation of the third river basin management plan, RBMP, for Scotland. The consultation provided stakeholder with the opportunity to comment on; the timescales for formal consultation, how we will engage with partners, our intentions for cross border working and aligning RBMP with other plans and policies. A consultation for the Solway Tweed ran in conjunction.

You said

We received 38 responses from a variety of well-informed stakeholders who agreed with the proposed consultation steps and timescales set out in the consultation. The respondents were very supportive of the proposed partnership approach and integration with plans and policies. They felt this was the most efficient way to use resource and delivery multiple benefits. Some respondents sought clarification about the format of engagement and more detail about how RBMP would be integrated into other plans and policies.

We did

The full summary of responses can be found here.

Given the supportive nature of the responses SEPA will progress with the proposals outlined. SEPA will publish a communication and engagement strategy geared to the publication of the third plans to provide further detail to stakeholders.


We are now starting the process of updating the Scotland river basin district management plan.

The plan, along with the Solway Tweed river basin district management plan, describes the environmental objectives for all Scotland’s river, loch, groundwater, estuary and coastal water bodies and is a route map for achieving them. The plan is updated every six years. You can view the current plan here: River basin management plan for the Scotland river basin district 2015 - 2027

The updated plan, which will be Scotland’s third river basin management plan, has to be finalised by December 2021. The Statement of consultation steps document sets out the steps SEPA will take to engage stakeholders in the preparation of this plan.

We are very keen to hear your thoughts on these steps. Please have a look at the Statement of consultation steps, which you can access from the link at the bottom of this page, and then let us know what you think by completing the online survey.

The consultation is open from 22 June 2018 to 22 December 2018. Your response will be used to inform improvements we can make to the consultation arrangements set out in this document.


  • Agriculture
  • Distilling
  • Hydropower
  • Local Authorities
  • Responsible Authorities
  • Fisheries
  • Landowners/ managers
  • Forestry
  • Aquaculture
  • National Parks
  • SEPA Staff
  • Public
  • Developers
  • Water


  • Bathing waters
  • Water Regulation
  • Diffuse pollution
  • Fisheries
  • Water Quality
  • River Basin Management Planning