A hundred kilometres long, the Forth estuary has a catchment of 4 500 km². It supports five bird populations of European importance for nature conservation. At the same time, 1.25 million people live around its perimeter, part of which is heavily urbanised and industrialised.
To encourage partnership management that takes as much account as possible of the interests involved, the Forth Estuary Forum was established in 1993. It functions on a voluntary and informal basis and it comprised of over 200 representatives of local authorities, statutory agencies, commerce, industry, NGOs, etc.
- Assessment of the effectiveness of a non-statutory voluntary partnership approach in developing integrated management of a large estuarine area.
- Increased cooperation between all interests concerned and their commitment to sustainable development.
- Improvement of environmental protection.
- Preparation of an integrated management strategy for the Estuary and Firth of Forth, and the corresponding action plans.