The Big Climate Conversation

Public share opinions on transitioning to net-zero.

A public engagement programme on how to end Scotland’s contribution to climate change has shown widespread support for home energy efficiency improvements, increased use of public transport and transitioning to a more circular economy.

More than 2,500 people from across Scotland engaged in the Big Climate Conversation, with different audience types reflecting differing views on food, land use and energy.

The Big Climate Conversation findings will directly inform the update to the Scottish Government’s current Climate Change Plan and the development of a new Public Engagement Strategy for climate change.

Climate Change Secretary Roseanna Cunningham said:

“The reduction in emissions we need to achieve to end Scotland’s contribution to climate change within a generation will require action by everybody and must be a truly national endeavour.

“We must also ensure our transformation to net-zero takes place in a just and fair way – no one should be left behind. That’s why the Scottish Government undertook The Big Climate Conversation last year.

“This report shows the breadth and value of the discussions that took place and I look forward to these continuing as Scotland progresses further to a net-zero society during the important years ahead.

“We will soon announce plans for Scotland’s Citizens Assembly on Climate Change which will build on the important insights gained through the Big Climate Conversation. In the meantime, I would like to thank everyone who took part.” 

Executive Director of the Raploch Community Partnership Janette Mitchell said:

As a local community regeneration charity, we were delighted to launch the community-led Big Climate Conversation. It was a wonderful focus for our wider Empowering Communities work. 

“By holding our climate conversations, our service users and stakeholders helped us design our employability, training, volunteering and digital services with a new emphasis on tackling the global climate emergency.”


The Big Climate Conversation report is available on the Scottish Government website.

The Climate Change Secretary announced the establishment of a cross-party working group to support the delivery of the Climate Change Plan update on Tuesday 28 January.

The Big Climate Conversation included 10 open-audience workshops, with a specific event in Stirling focused at a youth audience. A further five events were specifically targeted at participants with lower prior engagement in climate change, while guidance and funding was made available for communities hold their own conversation events and submit their feedback. The conversations covered 80% of local authority areas from Shetland to Dumfries. A digital conversation also took place on Twitter.


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