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Plans for Mandatory Public Sector Climate Change Reporting in Scotland

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Major public sector bodies in Scotland could soon be required to report their compliance with climate change targets under new plans being considered by the Scottish Government.

Public sector bodies in Scotland currently produce voluntary reports on their climate change compliance, but these are not submitted to a central collection for analysis, review or feedback.  The information within these reports is also not currently used by the Scottish Government to assess the performance of these organisations or the sector as a whole.

Under the new plans, some 150 public bodies, including local authorities, NHS boards and academic institutions, would have to supply annual climate change performance information to the Scottish Government each year.

The Government hopes that an improved reporting system would help provide a much clearer overview of public sector performance on climate change management and adaption, and help inform future policy, funding and support.

The proposals suggest that future mandatory reporting would replace the existing voluntary reporting systems and enable more consistent standards, continuous improvement and transparency within the Scottish public sector. 

The Scottish Government is proposing a trial of the mandatory reporting approach, including applicable forms and templates, which will be laid before Parliament this summer.  It has been suggested that the new mandatory reporting requirements could be implemented in full by as early as November 2015. 

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