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.

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.


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.

A new report by the Centre for Sustainable Energy, commissioned by the Welsh Government in 2015, identifies which low income households are the most vulnerable from the detrimental effects of living in cold homes, and which are in the greatest need of a home energy efficiency intervention. The research also tested the potential reach and impact of a new energy efficiency scheme using a number of different annual budgets.

The Speird Project

By Robert Lyons on 14th December 2016

The Scottish Government’s statistics now show that rural households spend more on energy to heat their homes than urban equivalents. However, research conducted by the project team using data from households in Renfrewshire has found this ‘energy spend gap’ is more significant than those statistics suggest, whilst other research has shown that influences on the energy spend of rural households are also highly multi-facted.

This implementation guide from Resource Efficient Scotland, a programme from Zero Waste Scotland, describes how organisations can effectively measure and monitor their use of energy, water and raw materials, in order to identify patterns of wasteful behaviour and opportunities to reduce resource use, improve environmental performance and save money.  It provides a clear five-step guide:

A new guidance document has been released, which for the first time, brings together in one place examples of planning policies around the UK that support community food growing. Published by Sustain, the alliance for better food and farming, the report sets the planning context in the four nations, and provides the background to community food growing. The bulk of the report is structured around the different issues that food growing helps to address, from sustainability to residential amenity via health and wellbeing, green infrastructure, regeneration and many other agendas.

As part of the Scottish Government’s Climate Change Behaviours Research Programme (CCBRP), guidance has recently been published on the ISM (Individual, Social, Material) Tool.  The ISM tool offers a practical way for policy-makers and practitioners to consider all of the contexts that influence people’s behaviours - Individual, Social and Material - and the various different factors within those three contexts.

The UK National Commission for UNESCO has released a report which provides an account of the current status of Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) across the UK. The report describes how ESD can be thought of as a process of learning how to make decisions that consider the long-term future of the economy, ecology and equity of all communities.

This workshop was held on 7th December 2007 to assist DfT and Defra in developing policies to deal with climate change adaptation and transport. The workshop aimed to facilitate stakeholder discussion in response to four key issues: