Developing climate change targets for the Scottish Land Commission
In April 2019, Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon declared the world’s first climate emergency. As a result of this and the recommendations of the UK Climate Change Risk Assessment 2017, the Scottish Government set a suite of world-leading, ambitious targets to achieve net-zero emissions by 2045. To realise this commitment, strong and decisive leadership is required to create dynamic action to achieve a just transition towards a prosperous net-zero economy.
Accordingly, the Scottish Land Commission announced its intention to take a leading role in the fight against climate change. To support this position, it commissioned RSK to develop a climate action plan (CAP), including a route map, to significantly reduce its emissions and embed tailored reduction targets and actions throughout the organisation and its supply chain.
RSK’s work on this project comprised multiple aspects. A bespoke carbon calculator tool and an accompanying user guide were created to enable the Commission to determine its carbon footprint annually in accordance with internationally recognised standards for greenhouse gas accounting. This included conducting a baseline greenhouse gas emissions assessment to quantify the total emissions produced, directly and indirectly, from the organisation’s activities in 2019.
Additionally, a range of strategic greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets were identified on the basis of the findings from the tool, in consultation with the client. These were tailored and specific to the Commission and were accompanied by a detailed route map that identified innovative actions for the achievement of its net-zero ambition within an ambitious time frame. The final plan included a strategy for its review and a range of indicators through which the Commission will be able to determine the relative success of efforts to reduce its emissions.
RSK’s proposed targets and actions will be embedded throughout the organisation and will underpin the Commission’s next strategic plan.