Research and Resources

Explore sustainability-related research and resources here, including recently released reports, journal articles, online tools and databases. Use the left sidebar to filter resources by theme.

INHERIT baseline report

By Robert Lyons on 20th September 2017

In this report, the INHERIT team explores the opportunities for change across Europe which can facilitate progress towards triple-win scenarios. The report investigates the links between behaviour, environmental sustainability, health and health equity for three inter-related sectors: living (green space, housing), moving (active transport) and consuming (food).

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Climate Change Assessment Tool (CCAT)

By Robert Lyons on 15th August 2017

The Climate Change Assessment Tool (CCAT) has been specially devised to assist public sector organisations comply with the Climate Change (Scotland) Act 2009, both in terms of meeting carbon emissions reductions targets and reporting to the Scottish Government.

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This modelling study, published in Nature Plants, suggests that while climate change could have a serious adverse effect on current coffee-growing areas, a shift of production to uphill areas could increase production fourfold. 

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Sustainability of liquid biofuels

By Robert Lyons on 18th July 2017

A new report by the Royal Academy of Engineering suggests that the UK should focus on the use of waste for the production of biofuels rather than crops that might displace food production. The authors argue that ncentives should be given to farmers to increase production of fuel crops like Miscanthus on marginal land and note that even with the greater use of electric vehicles, biofuels will still be needed for aviation and heavy goods.

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The more variable nature of some forms of renewable energy can be balanced by using adequately flexibile measures, such as adaptable fuel generation sources, active demand response (a change in consumer power consumption to match the demand for power with the supply), better storage of power and interconnections; the big challenge is to develop a flexible power system with the adequate resources to ensure a cost-effective integration of renewables.

This report for Nature Climate Change is a quantitative assessment of the economic costs of the joint impacts of local and global climate change for all main cities around the world. Cost–benefit analyses are presented of urban heat island mitigation options, including green and cool roofs and cool pavements. It is shown that local actions can be a climate risk-reduction instrument.

The latest report from the CCC argues that two new plans covering emissions reductions and actions to prepare for climate change are needed to meet the UK’s climate change objectives. The plans to be developed by the new Government will be drawn up against a backdrop of changes that could help to deliver better policy. However, some of these changes also present risks to the delivery of those climate change plans.

Two-thirds of cities experiencing relative economic decline face above average flood disadvantage according to new research by Sayers and Partners for the Joseph Rowntree Foundation. The report highlights how floods interact with social vulnerability across the UK to create flood disadvantage, an issue which will be exacerbated by climate change.

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This first set of annual reports give insight into the progress Scotland’s public sector is making towards meeting Scotland’s climate change targets. The reports also provide useful insight into how the Scottish public sector is responding to the challenge of climate change within each organisation, including how the sector is contributing to carbon emissions reduction, climate change adaptation, procurement policies and activity.

This study notes that under current carbon-emission rates, this temperature rise will occur around the middle of this century, with damaging effects on coastal businesses and ecosystems, while also triggering major human migration from low-lying areas. Global sea-level rise will not be uniform, and will differ for different points of the globe.

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