Minutes of the Board Meeting
Jim Martin (JM), Chair
Richard Dixon (RD)
Marie Fallon (MF)
Paul McAleavey (PM)
Annalisa Savaresi (AS)*
ESS Team (Items 2-9 as noted):
Mark Roberts (MR), CEO
Neil Langhorn (NL), Head of Strategy and Analysis
Jamie McGrandles (JMcG), Head of Investigations,
Standards and Compliance
Rebecca Peppiette (RP), Head of Corporate Services
and Communications (Minutes: items 2-3)
Charlotte Lowe (CL), Business and Case Support
Officer (Minutes: items 4-9)**
*via Microsoft Teams
** present at items 4-9 only
The Chair welcomed the Board and the Environmental Standards Scotland (ESS) team, and led introductions for the recommended new appointments to the ESS Board, REDACTED and REDACTED, who joined the meeting as observers.
There were no declarations of interest.
The Board agreed to take the review of the Corporate Services and Communications Team structure at item 9 first.
|3.||Review of Corporate Services and Communications team structure
An update was provided to the Board on the Corporate Services and Communication team recruitment planning. No substantial concerns were raised.
|4.||Minutes and matters arising
At this point CL joined the meeting.
RP noted that ESS will be required to pay fees to external audit and that this will need to be corrected at item 3 of the draft minutes of the previous meeting. The Board approved the minutes, subject to this amendment.
On the matters arising, the Board requested an update regarding Board stakeholder engagement and the establishment of the International Advisory Panel. These updates were covered at item 5.
MR provided an update to the Board on ESS activities since the last Board meeting, highlighting:
The Board discussed preparations for meeting with the OEP and IEPAW, and highlighted potential opportunities for European-level engagement. This included the EPA Network and the incoming Executive Director of the European Environment Agency.
MR presented the high-level milestone planner. The Board noted that the Scottish Government is due to lay its Air Quality Improvement Plan before the Scottish Parliament on 27 March 2023 and discussed ESS’ proposed response.
The Board also requested an update on ESS’ approach to accessing expert advice and regular updates on horizon scanning activities at future Board meetings.
|6.||Strategy and Analysis
NL introduced the update on ESS’ analytical priorities, highlighting that:
In discussion, the Board:
NL presented an update on the analytical project on threats to the marine environment. NL noted that, in order to ensure flexibility and provide additional inhouse expertise, the team has considered resourcing the project with an external secondment or a fixed term appointment (FTA) rather than commissioning a third party organisation. The Board approved the allocation of budget to support a secondment/FTA, whilst highlighting the importance of ESS’ independence when approaching relevant bodies.
|7.||Investigations and representations
JMcG provided an update on representations and enquiries to date, including:
MF updated the Board on activities of the Audit and Risk Committee, highlighting:
CL presented the updated risk register, noting only minor changes in anticipation of the Audit and Risk Committee’s upcoming review of ESS’ approach to risk management and reporting. The Board approved the risk register, recommending that the action target date against the cyber security risk be updated to reflect the team’s ongoing work to develop a more in-depth business continuity plan exercise.
RP presented the budget and expenditure update, and an overview of the external
The Board approved expenditure related to resourcing the threats to the marine environment analytical project, as per item 6, and ESS’ approach to external audit and producing the Annual Report and Accounts.
|9.||Any other business
PM noted that he will be presenting to Scottish Council for Development and Industry in Brussels and will provide an overview of ESS.
The Board congratulated the Chair on his lecture given as part of the University of Edinburgh’s Brodies Environmental Law Lecture Series.
Chair, Environmental Standards Scotland
25 May 2023