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Women in peatland restoration: Q&A with Jura MacMillan

Jura MacMillan at a peatland restoration site

In celebration of International Women's Day we spoke to our Environmental Consultant, Jura MacMillan about being a woman in the nature market.

At Caledonian Climate we are very proud to have a stellar team that is dedicated to advancing peatland restoration in Scotland. As an organisation, we believe in the power of diversity to bring fresh perspectives and garner the very best results for our peatland projects.   

With this in mind, this International Women’s Day, we are celebrating the fantastic women in our team who are so essential to our success.

A geography graduate specialising in the environmental impacts of Scottish land management, Jura MacMillan is passionate about restoring wild places. In this blog we speak to Jura, who is one of our Environmental Consultants, about her role and women in the sector at large.


What led you to your role at Caledonian Climate?

“I studied Geography at the University of Glasgow, specialising in environmental geography. I wrote my dissertation on land management in the Scottish Highlands, which ultimately paved the way for me to secure a job at Caledonian Climate after graduation.

“I really wanted a role where I could spend time outside, so being an Environmental Consultant is perfect for me. I love being out in the hills and visiting peatland restoration projects – it's inspiring to see the results of our work.”


What interests you most about peatland restoration?

“Seeing the restoration process in action. From the initial data and assessments to re-wetting the land and ongoing maintenance – I enjoy being part of restoring the land. It is incredibly rewarding part to see the impact of what you do in-person!”


What does a typical day look like for you as an Environmental Consultant?

“A typical day will involve lots of communication with different organisations and clients. I’ll undertake mapping on QGIS, which includes activities such as erosion mapping and restoration planning.”

“Data analysis also makes up a part of my day, as does writing reports. Finally, I’ll often be out and about surveying and visiting sites. No day is ever the same!”


Would you say that the sector is quite progressive in terms of gender balance, or is there still a way to go?

“I would say there is an imbalance in more senior positions – it would be good to see more experienced women in higher-authority roles in our sector.

“It is brilliant to see that more younger women are joining the industry – the next generation is so engaged in environmentalism, inspired by the likes of Greta Thunberg and other well-known advocates. Hopefully, that trend will continue.”


Climate change disproportionately impacts women, yet only 35% of party delegates at COP27 were women – why do you think there is this gender imbalance when it comes to decision-making processes?

“Systematically and historically, women have not been afforded the same opportunities as their male counterparts. Especially when it comes to decision-making and environmental policy, women are not equally represented.”

“This is changing thanks to forward-thinking organisations such as Caledonian Climate who are actively recruiting women into all roles.


Which women do you admire in the sector and why?

“A woman who I know and admire is Hazel, a Peatland Action Officer at NatureScot. She has over 30 years of peatland experience, and working with her has been really incredible. She is a fountain of knowledge.”


What would you say to encourage more young people, especially women, to get involved with peatland restoration as a career?

“Just go for it! Back yourself.”

“Working at Caledonian Climate, I have never felt any stigma or disrespect within the company. It’s such a positive working environment and everyone is treated with the same respect. The industry is changing and companies like Caledonian Climate are pushing for greater equality to provide more opportunities for women who want to work in this space.” 


Interesting in finding out more about the services we offer landowners and businesses? Head here to learn more.


For more information on this article, please contact:

Freddie Ingleby

Managing Director

+44 (0) 7840 998 944

About Caledonian Climate

Working responsibly with the custodians of Scotland’s beautiful countryside, Caledonian Climate is committed to tackling the twin crises of climate change and biodiversity loss.

To achieve this, we talk to forward-thinking businesses who want to fulfil their ambitions for carbon emission reductions through high-quality carbon credits with multiple co-benefits. We then partner them with landholders in the Scottish Highlands, maximising the ecological value and sustainability of their estates.

Building on our significant experience, and guided by a distinguished Advisory Board, Caledonian Climate is delivering the benchmark for long-term restoration of Scotland's degraded peatlands, locking away the carbon for good.

Our work also enhances biodiversity, improves water quality, boosts local economies and creates a compelling story for all of our partners to share.