Nearly 10,000 people have signed a petition for Wales to have devolved control of just over £603M of Crown Estate land in Wales.
At the moment, the Queen receives 25% of the profits and the remaining goes to the UK treasury. Whilst profits generated from Crown Estate in Wales go to the UK treasury, profits from Crown Estate in Scotland goes directly to the Scottish government.
A petition was started by Rhodri Williams, 37, from Cwmafan after discovering the Scottish government received its profits directly, whereas the Welsh government does not benefit from the profits generated. Rhodri said “It just seems totally unjust and unfair that one part of the union is treated differently to the other. These are our waters, why are we not having the money?”
The Welsh Secretary, Simon Hart said there is no public interest or appetite for reform and if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
The Crown Estate in Scotland was devolved in April 2017, the Scottish government having control over management, assets and the profits generated. The profits generated since are:
- 2017 – 2018 = £7,196,492.02
- 2018 – 2019 = £9,699,486.83
- 2019 – 2020 = £11,389,004.14
The Welsh Conservatives are against the idea of devolution of the Crown Estate in Wales, their spokesperson Janet Finch-Saunders stating “If it’s not broken, why on earth would we want to support the further devolution of powers?”
The Welsh government said “Devolving control over the Crown Estate would give us greater flexibility to choose how far and fast we deploy renewables in Wales. We have outstanding natural resources to generate renewable energy. We want to be able to use those to benefit people in Wales by investing in communities and green, skilled jobs.”
Rhodri Williams who started the petition wrote: “The value of the Crown Estate Wales’ renewable assets grew from £49.2m in 2020 to £549.1m in 2021. This is money that would enable Wales to build and develop our own Welsh renewable energy industry rather than selling off our assets to the highest foreign bidder.“
You can sign the petition here: www.change.org/p/welsh-secretary-simon-hart-transfer-control-of-the-500m-crown-estate-to-wales-like-in-scotland