Public service reform reporting

Scottish Canals Statement of Expenditure 2015/16:

(in accordance with the Public Services Reform (Scotland) Act 2010)

  • Payments in excess of £25k – £9,374k
  • Public Relations/Marketing – £325k
  • Overseas Travel – £3k
  • Hospitality & Entertainment – £1k
  • External Consultancy – £12k

Expenditure on Public Relations includes:

  • Advertising
  • Social media
  • Design work
  • Training
  • Subscriptions
  • Event management
  • In-house staff costs
  • Any other promotional activity.

Expenditure on External Consultancy includes:

  • Environmental advice
  • Provision of review services for residential charging


MEMBERS OR EMPLOYEES WHO RECEIVED REMUNERATION IN EXCESS OF £150k Does not include receipt of pension, voluntary severance compromise agreements or redundancy payments


Statement of Efficiency, Effectiveness and Economy

Scottish Canals is committed to delivering increased value through improvements in the economy, efficiency and effectiveness of its functions. As part of the Efficient Government Programme, Scottish Canals had a cumulative target of achieving £300k of efficiency savings by the end of the 2015/16 financial year.  By the end of this financial year, Scottish Canals had achieved savings of £321k through the implementation of projects which have reduced expenditure and increased efficiency across the organisation, delivered by cumulative efficiencies achieved across a range of projects, specifically in the areas of the provision of in-house ICT services, energy efficiency savings projects and re-negotiation of lease costs.

Promotion of Sustainable Growth

Scottish Canals is committed to operating in a sustainable manner by enhancing the canal network and wider environment and by minimising the environmental impacts of our own activities.  We have made progress in a number of key areas this year.

  • Scottish Canals first Environment Strategy – To consolidate this work, and provide direction for the next 10 years, we published our first Environment Strategy in December 2015. The Strategy sets out how we will directly contribute to Scottish Government’s National Outcomes to create sustainable places, reduce the environmental impact of resource use and to enjoy, protect and enhance our built and natural environment. During the development of the strategy we reviewed our current performance across ten key environmental themes and considered the benefits that positive environmental management can bring. This shaped a series of key aims and targets which will form our priorities for the next ten years. By working with our partners and customers, we are confident that this strategy will build on our previous successes and deliver many tangible environmental, social and economic benefits over the coming years.
  • Travel – Our network of canal-side towpaths provides safe, traffic-free routes to school and work for low carbon impact modes of travel.   In 2015/16, we upgraded 43.2 km of these important active travel routes across the canal network.  We continue to use technology to reduce the need for business travel. As travel is necessary for the management of our geographically dispersed estate, we have continued our programme to replace older, less efficient vehicles in the liveried fleet with more efficient models.  We are also investigating the provision electric vehicle charging points for both public and staff use. Further details of our approach can be found in the Transport and Travel theme of the Environment Strategy.
  • Energy – Scottish Canals submitted its first Public Sector Climate Change Duties report for the pilot year 2014-15. During the development of the Energy and Carbon Management theme of the Environment Strategy we have identified a number of key areas to contribute to climate change mitigation by using energy more efficiently and by increasing renewable energy generation.  By positively engaging with staff, customers and partners we can mitigate for, and adapt to, climate change.  The World Wide Fund for Nature presented Scottish Canals, in partnership with Falkirk Council and Falkirk Community Trust, the Earth Hour Public Body Runner-Up Award for 2015. The lights illuminating the internationally-renowned landmarks The Falkirk Wheel and The Kelpies were turned off, helping to put a spotlight on the issues facing the planet and remind us that, together, we have the power to make change happen.
  • Waste – Scottish Canals manages over 80 different waste types which are generated by our own activities (e.g. from offices, construction projects and canal estate management) and indirectly by our land and water based customers.   A high proportion of our own waste is recycled.  Recycling rates were improved in 2015/16 by providing glass recycling facilities at key destinations on the Caledonian and Crinan Canals. Scottish Canals are currently working on a new recycling and residual waste contract that has been written to require the successful contractor to work with the organization to increase the recycling rate of collected materials. Further details of our approach can be found in the Waste Management theme of the Environment Strategy.
  • Water – As one of the top raw water users in Scotland, we continued to have a good record of compliance with our Scottish Environment Protection Agency water use licences in 2015.  To enhance the sustainable urban drainage and flood alleviation potential of the canal network, we have continued work on a number of initiatives e.g. Metropolitan Glasgow Strategic Drainage Partnership and North Glasgow integrated water management project. We undertook a potable (drinking) water review with assistance from Resource Efficient Scotland in 2016 and have identified ways to reduce our future usage. Further details of our approach can be found in the Water Resource Management and Flood Control  theme of the Environment Strategy.
  • Procurement – Sustainability criteria were applied to all relevant contracts. We sell local food and crafts at our retail outlets. Community Benefits are now being incorporated into new contracts where applicable to provide additional ways of benefitting the local area in terms of Social, Economic and Environmental improvements. Procurement has recruited a Modern Apprentice to assist in the running of the department and to further the aims of developing opportunities for young people. Further details of our approach can be found in the Sustainable Procurement  theme of the Environment Strategy.
  • Heritage –  Much of our estate is of national historic importance with all 5 of our canals now designated as Scheduled Ancient Monuments. In accordance with our 25 year Heritage Strategy and 5 year action plan published in May 2013  we continue to shape our future as we celebrate our 250 year legacy and seek to sustain it for the next generation, engage new audiences, widen participation and harness the socio-economic benefits positive heritage management can bring. Examples of progress in 2015/16 include an agreement with the National Records of Scotland (NRS) to take into its care Scottish Canals’ nationally important pre-1962 archive.  NRS will raise the public profile of the archive and its accessibility.  We also investigated the potential to develop a programme of traditional skills apprenticeships at the Rosebank Distillery in Falkirk. We completed vegetation clearance on the historically significant Kelvin Aqueduct on the Forth & Clyde Canal in Glasgow.
  • Biodiversity – Scottish Canals published its first Biodiversity Duty Report for the period 2011-14 in 2015.  This report highlights Scottish Canals’ activities with regard to biodiversity on our estate. Under the Nature Conservation (Scotland) Act (2004), all public bodies in Scotland are required to further the conservation of biodiversity when carrying out their responsibilities. The Wildlife and Natural Environment (Scotland) Act (2011) further requires public bodies in Scotland to provide a publicly available report, every three years, on the actions which they have taken to meet this biodiversity duty. Further details of our approach can be found in the Biodiversity Management  theme of the Environment Strategy.