Decarbonisation in the public sector

We recognise that the public sector - as a provider of services, a major employer and procurer of goods and services - has an important role to play in decarbonising Scotland.

We expect Scotland's public bodies to lead by example in combating climate change and making a valuable contribution towards achieving our emissions reduction targets.

We publish climate change reports for our own estate within the yearly sustainability reports.

Climate change reporting by public bodies

The Climate Change (Scotland) Act 2009 requires public bodies to:

  • contribute to carbon emissions reduction targets
  • contribute to climate change adaptation
  • act sustainably

The Act also allows ministers to:

  • impose other climate change duties
  • require reports on compliance with climate change duties
  • designate one or more bodies or persons to monitor compliance and carry out investigations

Some of these powers have not yet been used, however following public consultation and parliamentary scrutiny we made The Climate Change (Duties of Public Bodies: Reporting Requirements) (Scotland) Order 2015, requiring the public bodies listed within to annually report on compliance with the climate change duties.

Submission of Public Bodies Climate Change Duties annual reports 2020

Due to technical changes our ProcXed platform is not available for 2020 and in order to minimise data handling we will accept annual reports in one of the following formats. Public bodies can choose to submit an updated version of last year’s report. A copy of your body’s report can be downloaded from the Sustainable Scotland Network website. Alternatively, public bodies can submit a one-year report using this spreadsheet template. Public bodies may also choose to submit a report that meets the requirements of 2015 Reporting Duties but which may not be in a standard format. Completed reports should be sent to by the 30 November deadline. Queries relating to the reports should also be sent to this email address.

Public sector engagement on climate change

Climate Week

We hold an annual Climate Week in September to raise awareness of and inspire action on climate change, with a focus on the public sector. The aim of Climate Week is to get organisations across Scotland to host events highlighting the importance of reducing emissions and adapting to a changing climate.

Read more information on Climate Week.


Page last updated: 28 August 2020