MSPs want the public to give their views on planned new laws aiming to cut down on red tape that protects Scotland's countryside and create new powers for tackling environmental crime.

MSPs on the Scottish Parliament's Climate Change and Environment Committee issued the appeal as they prepared to consider the Regulatory Reform (Scotland) Bill.

Convener Rob Gibson MSP said: "Protecting our environment is important not only to preserve the diversity of our wildlife, but for the thousands of people that enjoy Scotland's natural beauty, along with key sectors of our economy – from farming to tourism.

"This legislation will strengthen enforcement and sentencing powers with the aim of better protecting our environment.

"Our committee wants to hear a diverse range of views so we can look at the proposals in detail and make sure they deliver for Scotland's environment."

The MSPs will focus on a section of the Bill that deals with environmental regulation and want to hear opinions on plans to provide more powers protecting and improving the environment.

It is also examining enforcement for the Scottish Environment Protection Agency, including the operation of penalties and cost recoveries. Proposed powers for the courts to order those convicted of environmental crimes to consider compensation will also be examined.