Column by Gordon Watson, chief executive at Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park Authority

Many National Park residents are experiencing first-hand the effects of climate change and nature loss, with more frequent flooding and landslips damaging people’s homes, businesses and lifeline transport links.

Transforming the way each of us live, work in, visit and look after the National Park has never been more important.

If we want to turn the tide and create a climate-resilient place for future generations, we all have a part to play.

That includes governments and public bodies as well as communities, businesses and individuals.

With future generations facing the greatest impact, I believe it’s essential that young people have a seat at the table when we’re making decisions about issues such as climate change and the transition to a greener economy.

We know for example that the National Park is one of the most expensive places in Scotland to buy a house. And that like many rural areas in Scotland, it is also a place where car travel is dominant and where a lack of public and active travel options makes it difficult for our young people to get around without access to a car.

When we talk about the ‘green jobs’ that will be essential in a future Scotland, our young people quite rightly want to know what those jobs are and how they can ensure they have the right skills.

As young people living in and around the National Park consider their own futures, it is crucial that their voices are heard when we plan how to create a thriving National Park for the future.

A climate-resilient National Park where nature is being restored and where young people choose to live and work, taking advantage of new green jobs and an increase in affordable housing.

Our National Park Youth Committee was founded in 2018 and is open to 14-26 year-olds who want the opportunity to take action on issues that matter to them.

The young people involved gain skills and work experience, influence decision-making and get together with young people from National Parks across the UK for events and volunteering.

We are actively recruiting new members (deadline February 11) with more information available on the National Park Authority website at or by emailing