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Scottish Executive Environment and Rural Affairs Department (SEERAD)

Following reorganisation, SEERAD ceased to exist in 2007. Many of the functions of SEERAD were subsumed into the Environment Directorates of the Scottish Government.


The Scottish Executive Environment and Rural Affairs Department (SEERAD) was responsible for advising Ministers on policy relating to agriculture, rural development, food, the environment and fisheries, and for ensuring the implementation of those policies in Scotland. The Department also supported and promoted the agricultural and biological science base in Scotland.

The Departments main aims were:-

  • to help improve the economic performance of Scotlands agriculture, aquaculture, fishing and food industries within the wider context of sustainable exploitation of our land, sea and freshwater resources and rural development, while safeguarding the interests of consumers, protecting and enhancing the environment, and ensuring a fair deal for taxpayers; and
  • to support Ministers in helping the people of Scotland secure a high quality of life through sensitive stewardship and sustainable development of the natural resources of Scotland; in particular by securing a clean, healthy and safe environment, ensuring a safe and effective water industry, and improving peoples enjoyment of the environment.

SEERAD aimed to promote rural development and ensure that the needs and interests of rural Scotland were reflected in all of the Executives policies and priorities. The Department was responsible for ensuring that rural circumstances and the views of rural communities were taken into account in policy development across the Executive and externally.

SEERAD had the responsibility within the Scottish Executive for the promotion of sustainable development and embedding it across the range of the Executives policies.

SEERAD aimed to improve the agricultural, food and fisheries industries economic performance by effective implementation of the EC Common Agricultural Policy and Common Fisheries Policy obligations, and by promotion of further reform of policies at UK and EU level.

The Department was responsible for assisting the development and structural adjustment of the agriculture, aquaculture and fishing industries; regulating the sustainable exploitation of fish stocks and promoting fisheries conservation measures; and taking action against plant diseases and pests, and animal and fish diseases within the overarching controls of EU Single Market requirements. SEERAD also encourages high animal welfare standards on farms and in transport.

SEERAD aimed to protect and enhance the environment by promoting environmentally sensitive farming, farm woodlands and fishing, by securing the conservation and enhancement of Scotlands unique natural heritage and by improving scientific understanding of Scotlands terrestrial and aquatic environment.

They encouraged action to reduce pollution and other measures to safeguard the environment. Specifically, they developed and oversaw the implementation of policy on integrated pollution prevention and control, the water environment, waste management, air quality, radioactive waste, noise, climate change and ozone depleting substances and sponsor the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (the regulatory and enforcement authority for environmental protection and pollution control in Scotland, covering discharges to air, land and water).

SEERAD promoted nature conservation and the publics enjoyment of the natural heritage through ensuring compliance with EU and international nature conservation requirements and the positive management of designated areas. They introduced National Parks in Scotland, and prepared legislation to establish a right of responsible access to the countryside. In support of these aims they sponsored and worked through Scottish Natural Heritage, the Executives statutory adviser on natural heritage and nature conservation matters.

Contact details:

Head Office

Scottish Executive Rural Affairs Department
Pentland House
47 Robbs Loan
EH14 1TY

Tel: 0131 556 8400
Fax: 0131 244 6116

Email: ceu@scotland.gsi.gov.uk
Internet: http://www.scotland.gov.uk/agri/

Argyll and Western Isles

Cameron House
Albany Street
PA34 4AE

Tel: 01631 563071
Fax: 01631 566756

Email: SEERAD.Oban@scotland.gsi.gov.uk

Isle of Benbecula
PA88 5LA

Tel: 01870 602346
Fax: 01870 602077

Email: SEERAD.Benbecula@scotland.gsi.gov.uk

10 Keith Street
PA87 2QG

Tel: 01851 702392
Fax: 01851 705793

Email: SEERAD.Stornoway@scotland.gsi.gov.uk


Thainstone Court
By Inverurie
AB51 5YA

Tel: 01467 626222
Fax: 01467 626217

Email: SEERAD.Thainstone@scotland.gsi.gov.uk

32 Reidhaven Street
IV30 1VE

Tel: 01343 547514
Fax: 01343 552312

Email: SEERAD.Elgin@scotland.gsi.gov.uk


Government Building
28 Longman Road
Longman East

Tel: 01463 234141
Fax: 01463 714697

Email: SEERAD.Inverness@scotland.gsi.gov.uk

Estates Office
Isle of Skye
IV51 9DH

Tel: 01478 612516
Fax: 01478 613128

E-mail: SEERAD.Portree@scotland.gsi.gov.uk


Strathbeg House
Clarence Street
KW14 7JS

Tel: 01847 893104
Fax: 01847 895983

Email: SEERAD.Thurso@scotland.gsi.gov.uk

Ord Croft
IV27 4AZ

Tel: 01549 402167
Fax: 01549 402117

Email: SEERAD.Lairg@scotland.gsi.gov.uk

Northern Isles

Government Building
Tankerness Lane
KW15 1AQ

Tel: 01856 875444
Fax: 01856 873309

Email: SEERAD.Kirkwall@scotland.gsi.gov.uk

Charlotte House
Commercial Road

Tel: 01595 695054
Fax: 01595 694254

Email: SEERAD.Lerwick@scotland.gsi.gov.uk

North Eastern Perth and Kinross

Broxden Business Park
Lamberkine Drive

Tel: 01738 602000
Fax: 01738 602001

Email: SEERAD.Perth@scotland.gsi.gov.uk


Government Buildings
161 Brooms Road

Tel: 01387 255292
Fax: 01387 267116

Email: SEERAD.Dumfries@scotland.gsi.gov.uk

South Eastern

Cotgreen Road

Tel: 01896 892400
Fax: 01896 892424

Email: SEERAD.Galashiels@scotland.gsi.gov.uk

South Western

Russell House
King Street

Tel: 01292 610188
Fax: 01292 611483

Email: SEERAD.Ayr@scotland.gsi.gov.uk

Cadzow Court
3 Wellhall Road

Tel: 01698 281166
Fax: 01698 285277

Email: SEERAD.Hamilton@scotland.gsi.gov.uk

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