Case studies

Case studies from Climate Week activities


Staff in offices across SEPA came up with events to run during the week. Events included:


  • A talk on SEPA’s Regulatory Strategy, ‘One Planet Prosperity‘
  • A talk on Landfill Reuse, exploring the challenges of extracting and sorting waste from a closed landfill to enable the site to be used for housing
  • A talk from the Bike User Group on the best routes to get to work
  • A talk from organisation JNCC on regulating offshore businesses and oil spill control
  • Each talk was accompanied by a local food taster session
  • The Library was set up with information and displays. We also used the week to launch new food recycling caddies, and a re-use table.


  • A refresh of office waste collection signage
  • A litter pick in the office’s business park
  • Zero Waste lunch with support from Zero Waste Scotland and Love Food Hate Waste
  • Throughout the week the office ran a swap shop and sent out daily top tips related to waste reduction and recycling


  • A staff ‘Pot Luck’ lunch. A pledge board was available at the end of the lunch to ask people to pledge some action or change that they felt comfortable with
  • Coffee and cake ‘bring and take’ morning where people can swap things that are in good condition and usable


  • RSPB talk on corn buntings and their decline, as well as the successful project encouraging farmers to help them to get back on track
  • Poster boards at reception with abstracts from both The State of Nature Report 2016, and the Prevention of Environmental Pollution from Agricultural Activity, showing how government, NGOs, the private sector and the public have worked together to benefit nature in Scotland.


  • Flanders Moss – talk and visit re healthy peatland – SEPA and SNH
  • Talk re Hydropower guidance – SEPA and SNH
  • Making the case for soil – talk
  • Business park clean up – SEPA and KSB

Online activity

  • To ensure that we also had content for those outside our organisation we had four articles in our online magazine which were promoted across social media, as well as being featured in our electronic newsletter. The articles were, ‘Rediscovering the environment in public health’, ‘Calculating the economic savings from walking and cycling using HEAT’, ‘Air Pollution – a new problem?’, and ‘Climate Change, its effects on human health and wellbeing’.

Impact of Activity

In Aberdeen the attendance was good, with between 20-35 each day. In Aberdeen, Dingwall and Galashiels there was a very positive response towards the ‘local food’ events, with awareness raised and interesting discussions taking place about local produce, food miles and food waste. In Perth, Climate Week helped to highlight the positive difference that both SEPA and SGRPID, who share the building in Perth, are making to the environment through regulations. In Stirling, awareness was raised of the SNH bog restoration work that is bringing the water table back to the surface, so locking up carbon and restoring bog habitat.


Key learning points

Why it worked

“Asking everyone to bring something in got people to buy into the idea a bit more and action the message. We thought about where the meal came from, the aspect of food waste, sharing food grown at home, the office vegetable patch, local farm shops, and recipe ideas for leftovers.”

For me this quote highlights the ‘organic’ nature of asking the different SEPA offices to come up with diverse ideas for climate week, rather than suggesting or imposing a theme.


‘Top Tips’ / Lessons learned

Planning and coordinating time is essential. Enthusiasm for projects that highlight the work that SEPA (and for that matter – when we joined forces with SNH and KSB) already do which combats climate change, or aids adaptation, is a good way to design presentations etc.


Contact for further information: fionna.wallace@sepa.org.uk

The Scottish Parliament

We carried out various events to engage with our staff, MSPs, MSP staff and other building users.

  • Guided cycle commutes – staff volunteered to become guides for would be cyclists, showing them the best routes to cycle in to the Parliament
  • Sustainable Travel Stall – leaflets, maps and give-aways to encourage staff to look at the ways they travel and sign up to a travel plan
  • Reuseable coffee cups – Hand out free reuseable coffee cups to encourage the reduction in use of disposables
  • Amnesty on electric heaters – encouraging staff to give up their heaters with no questions asked
  • Low Carbon Popcorn – a screening of Fractured Land, a climate change film with special guest Caleb Bane, the star of the film attending at the end.
  • Electric bikes – staff could try out an electric bike and cycle it round Arthur’s seat. The Presiding Officer liked this very much.
  • Launch of our Sustainable Travel Plan, with special guests including MSPs, Cycling Scotland and Sustrans.
  • Low Carbon Menu – all the meals served in the canteen during the week, had their carbon footprint measurement listed next to the calories.

Impact of the Activity

Difficult to measure, however we had an interaction with over 400 people during the week at either the stalls or events.

Key learning points

Why it worked

Most of the activities were drop in and staff could give up only a short time to take part during their lunch breaks etc. We also linked to areas that staff were already interested in (particularly food) and tried to build in messages about climate change that linked in.

‘Top Tips’ / Lessons learned

  • Link to food and/or travel or something else that people are interested in
  • Word of mouth is the best way to encourage people to attend.

Really hard to judge what is going to be successful and what isn’t. Its hard work having so many events on at once, but that’s really the only way to reach a larger number of people.

Contact for further information:  Victoria.Barby@parliament.scot

Fife Environmental Partnership

Fife Environmental Partnership (FEP) Conference and Fair, ‘Harvesting Fife’s potential for a low carbon economy’ took place at Carnegie Conference Centre in Dunfermline on Tuesday 20 September 2016.   It was hosted by Fife's Environmental Partnership and project managed and facilitated by Resource Efficient Solutions, an arms-length company of Fife Council.

The event presented Fife's low carbon energy vision for homes, business and transport. It brought together Fife’s community groups, social enterprises, businesses, public bodies, students, teachers, Councilors, council staff and Fife Environment Partnership members to showcase their Carbon Reduction projects for 2017.  As well as workshops and presentations there were 40 stalls sharing information on carbon reduction projects and low carbon opportunities and technologies.

Cllr John Wincott, Fife’s environment champion, spoke on Fife’s vision for an affordable, secure, low carbon energy for the region. He referenced the Council’s work to develop a Sustainable Energy Climate Action plan that will help to deliver Fife Council’s Climate Change Strategy.

Jamie Scott, MasterChef winner and proprietor of critically acclaimed restaurant ‘The Newport’ in Newport-On-Tay in Fife, worked with Fife College catering students to produce a low carbon lunch using ingredients sourced within a 50 mile radius. Bread, cheeses, meat, vegetables, herbs, juices, ice-cream, sunflowers and coffee were all sourced locally.  Also used was produce from FareShare that would have otherwise gone to landfill.

Fife college fashion students showcased outfits and designs inspired and made from recycled materials including textiles recycled from textile banks donated by Nathans Waste Savers.

Plates and cutlery were supplied by Vegware and were compostable. What little food waste there was went to the anaerobic digestion power plant in Dunfermline to help create low carbon heat and electricity.

Head of Business, Enterprise and Tourism at Fife College, Bryan McCabe, was keen to sign up to the event as it was a great opportunity for Fife college catering, fashion and journalist students to get involved.  He felt for them to learn and understand more about carbon reduction and getting experience at a large event was invaluable.


Impact of the Activity

Main stakeholders involved with carbon reduction projects across Fife were, together, able to be up to date on aspirations, strategy, projects, technology and opportunities  for carbon reduction across Scotland and in the Fife region. 

The conference gave everyone opportunities:

  • for networking - putting faces to names and understanding who to contact  
  • Support for projects across the region  
  • Funding opportunities
  • An increase of understanding re. challenges and solutions
  • Knowledge of low carbon energy and travel technologies and what they can achieve in energy saving and carbon reductions
  • Reality of case studies and positive achievements
  • Reminder of what great local food is produced and how support for that increases local economies as well as reduce carbon
  • Inspiration for all, young and old for the many ways carbon can be reduced through small as well as big life changes.

Key learning points

Why it worked

The conference was current, informative, inspirational, professional, inclusive, fun and highlighted Fife’s talent and projects now and in the future positively.

Contact for further information : Carolyn Bell, Resource Efficient Solutions, Carolynm.bell@refsol.co.uk

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