SCOTTISH FARMERS are embracing the offer of carbon audits under ScotGov's National Test Programme, with demand doubling on the year.

In the first six months of this year, demand from farmers and crofters for these free audits – which measure how much carbon a farm is currently emitting to create a baseline for improvement – has dramatically increased.

In 2018, just 99 applications for carbon audits were received, while there were 502 applications for the whole of 2021. So far in 2022, 484 applications have been received between January and third week of July.

Rural Affairs Secretary Mairi Gougeon said: “The high demand for carbon audits highlights the key role Scotland’s farmers and crofters are playing in delivering priority climate change commitments and the just transition to our zero carbon targets.

“They really are engaging willingly with our shared ambitions here and I thank them for doing so. This shows what can be achieved with the right support," she said.

Read more: ScotGov offers £500 to help fund farm carbon audits

“We want Scotland to become a global leader in sustainable and regenerative agriculture and carbon audits will continue to be an important part of that journey and I would urge more in the agri sector to engage with the process and play their part in the shift to sustainable, low carbon farming.

“I would also encourage farmers, crofters and land managers to take advantage of the specialist advice available from the Farming Advisory Service to help them provide the high-quality food and drink that Scotland is renowned for in a sustainable way."