Climate Change Plan: monitoring reports 2022

The second annual statutory monitoring report against the updated 2018 Climate Change Plan, as per the Climate Change (Emissions Reduction Targets) (Scotland) Act 2019.


This set of monitoring reports on the Climate Change Plan is complementary both to the CCPu (which in itself updates the 2018 Plan) and the most recent Official Statistics on Scotland’s greenhouse gas emissions (which are for 2019), and is best read alongside these documents.

The Monitoring Framework for the Climate Change Plan for each of the sectors is structured on three levels: greenhouse gas emissions statistics provide the highest level measure of progress at an economy wide and sectoral level; a suite of policy outcome indicators measure the success of policies in achieving the changes that are needed; and a policy tracker monitoring implementation of specific policies and proposals.

Greenhouse Gas Emissions Statistics

Official Statistics on Scottish greenhouse gas emissions determine progress towards national emissions reduction targets and also provide information on total annual emissions at a sectoral level.

Statistics are published annually, typically in June, and two years in arrears. For example, the most recent figures, published in June 2021, cover emissions during 2019.

Those figures show that, on the basis used for reporting progress to Scotland’s statutory economy-wide targets, emissions are now down by 51.5% (between the 1990 baseline and 2019). However, the statutory annual target for 2019 (of a 55% reduction) was missed.

Any of Scotland’s ambitious annual emissions targets not being met is clearly disappointing. However, the 2019 emissions data still entirely predates the implementation of the strengthened policy package of the CCPu. The present monitoring report, which contains more up to date information at the level of many policies and policy outcomes, shows promising early signs of progress in delivering this package across many sectors and helps identify areas where further attention may be needed. Furthermore, in October 2021 we published a catch-up report which includes additional policies (over and above those in the CCPu) aimed at ensuring that the excess emissions arising from the missed 2019 annual target are made up in the future by outperforming future targets.

Future monitoring reports, as well as sets of emissions statistics themselves, will allow us to keep the situation under regular review and make further adjustments as needed. It should be noted though that the indicators set out in this monitoring framework largely relate to policies within the control of the Scottish Government. The overall economy-wide emissions outcomes, and therefore whether statutory targets are able to be met, also depends on a range of wider actions – including action taken by the UK Government and the private sector, and the pace of development and availability of technologies required to decarbonise certain sectors.

Policy Outcome Indicators

The Plan includes key policy outcomes for each sector, defined as a measurable change on the ground resulting from a policy or combination of related policies. The Framework will measure progress towards achieving these with a set of policy outcome indicators. A policy outcome indicator is a specific, objective measure closely aligned to achieving the outcome. It will underpin monitoring of long-term progress towards the outcome, but should also be responsive to change in the near-term, so that it can be used to evaluate whether the Plan is on track. Specific milestones (or targets) are set, where appropriate, for the level of the indicator to be achieved at a given time.

In the Plan update, the set of outcome indicators from the 2018 Plan were reviewed to ensure that they reflect the updated policy commitments and to improve the quality and clarity of indicators. This led to new outcome indicators being identified, others being revised, and a few being removed where they were no longer appropriate or there were significant issues with robustness. In the last year of reporting, we have amended several indicators, and added one, meaning there are now 44 indicators in total. An explanation of where indicators have been amended is included in each sector’s chapter. The following figure and table show the overview of progress against all policy outcome indicators across the sectors.

Progress towards policy outcome indicators
A graph showing the progress towards the policy outcome indicators marked by the sectors. The graph shows that out of 44 indicators, 27 indicators are on track, 7 indicators were marked as off track and 10 indicators as too early to say.

Summary graph 1

Compared to last year’s report (which came shortly after the finalisation of the CCPu), many fewer indicators are classed as “too early to say” but there remain some instances where this is the case. The reasons for such assessments are laid out in sector chapters, and arise because of a lack of data availability or technology yet to be established. For example, COVID has limited the collection of several key datasets leading to several indicators being rated as “Too early to say”.

Summary Table 1: Progress against policy outcome indicators
On Track Off Track Too Early to Say
Chapter 1: Electricity
Electricity grid intensity (CO2e per kilowatt hour) X
Installed capacity of renewable generation (GW) X
Renewable capacity at planning stages (GW: 3 categories) X
Loss of Load Expectation (hours per year) X
Chapter 2: Buildings
Number of existing domestic properties using low and zero greenhouse gas emissions heating systems X
Services sector fossil fuel heat demand X
Energy intensity of residential buildings (MWh per household) X
Emissions intensity of non-domestic buildings (tonnes of CO2e per £ million Gross Value Added) X
% of homes with an EPC (EER, or equivalent) of at least C X
% new homes built with a calculated space heating demand of not more than 20 kWh/m²/yrT X
% of Scottish gas demand accounted for by biomethane and hydrogen blended into the gas network X
Percentage of households in fuel poverty X
Chapter 3: Transport
% reduction in car kilometres X
% of new car registrations that are ULEV X
% of new van registrations that are ULEV X
% of new HGV registrations that are ULEV X
% of new bus registrations that are ULEV X
% reduction in emissions from scheduled flights within Scotland X
% of ferries that are low emissions X
% of single track kilometres electrified X
% of train kilometres powered by alternative traction X
Chapter 4: Industry
Industrial energy productivity (£GVAm per GWh) X
Industrial emissions intensity (tCO2e per £GVAm) X
% of Scottish gas demand accounted for by biomethane and hydrogen blended into the gas network X
Chapter 5: Waste
Total amount of landfilled waste (tonnes) X
Total amount of biodegradable landfilled waste (tonnes) X
Number of closed landfill sites with exploratory landfill gas capture/ flaring X
Household and non-household food waste reduced (tonnes) X
Total waste generated (tonnes) X
Chapter 6: LULUCF
Hectares of woodland created per year X
Woodland ecological condition X
Woodland Carbon Code: Projected carbon sequestration (validated credits) X
Annual volume (in millions of cubic metres) of Scottish produced sawn wood and panel boards used in construction X
Hectares of peatland restored per year X
Peatland Carbon Code: Projected emissions reduction (validated units) X
Chapter 7: Agriculture
Increased engagement with Farm Advisory Services on environmental issues and climate change X
Use of Nitrogen fertilisers X
Spreading precision of Nitrogen fertilisers X
Nitrogen use efficiency for crop production X
Time taken from birth to slaughter and increased efficiency through improved health and reduced losses X
Improvement in covered slurry storage X
Precision application of manure and slurry X
Hectares of peatland restored per year X
Area of woodland on agricultural land X

Policy Tracker

The Plan update includes a set of specific policies and proposals for each sector to achieve the policy outcomes. The Framework will monitor progress towards implementing policies and developing proposals with a policy tracker, which will be set out for annual progress reporting, from May 2022. This will consistently record progress and next steps for policies, and where possible it will include implementation indicators for specific policies.



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