Public Sector


Public Sector Climate Action




The public sector plays a critical role in Scotland’s response to climate change. Across Scotland, public sector organisations are taking action to reduce the climate impact of their own activities and to improve the climate change resilience of their services. Public sector organisations are also working in partnership to help communities, businesses and third sector organisations to reduce Scotland’s greenhouse gas emissions and to adapt to the impacts of a changing climate.


Public sector organisations work together through the Sustainable Scotland Network (SSN) to improve their policy and action on climate change.  SSN is supported by the Scottish Government, managed and developed by Keep Scotland Beautiful and involves public sector professional from all of Scotland’s public sector ‘major players’. This includes local authorities, the NHS, universities and colleagues, regional transport partnerships and a range of national public sector organisations.


The SSN Newsletter is published weekly with examples of public sector climate action. The newsletter is available free to anyone – sign up for the newsletter here.


The SSN web pages contain examples of public sector climate action from across Scotland. This includes annual climate change reports from all major players in the public sector, and information about the public sector’s role in Scotland’s policy response to climate change – through reducing emissions and adapting to climate change. SSN also provides support to help public sector organisations to take informed action on low carbon behaviours using the Scottish Government’s Individual, Social, Material (ISM) framework.


As well as support from the SSN, public sector organisations are supported in their climate change action by a range of SSN partners, including:

  • Resource Efficient Scotland – a programme run by Zero Waste Scotland providing support on resource efficiency, carbon reduction and energy projects.
  • Adaptation Scotland – a programme run by Sniffer providing support on adapting to the impacts of a changing climate.
  • COSLA – providing policy advise and representation on climate change for affiliated local authorities.
  • The Environmental Association for Universities and Colleges – an organisation providing climate change networking, training and capacity building support for higher and further education institutes.
  • NHS Health Facilities Scotland – part of NHS Scotland providing dedicated sustainability, energy and climate change support across the NHS.


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