Hosted at the iconic Edinburgh Castle a workshop was held today to provide delegates with the knowledge and tools required to create realistic carbon managemenet plans.

This is the third workshop in a Public Sector Support Programme for Carbon Strategy and Policy Development being delivered by Urban Foresight for Zero Waste Scotland.

The workshop explained how how to identify opportunities and realise benefits of of collaboration. Delegates had all prepared project plans as part of the support programme which provided a basis for discussion on potential project approaches and the possible barriers involved.

A key part of the discussion was on sources of funding and the various approaches that can be adopted to finance a project. This included a presentation by the Scottish Futures Trust, an independent company, established by the Scottish Government with a responsibility for delivering value for money across public sector infrastructure investment.

Delegates were then invited to consider how financial and carbon reporting can be integrated into strategy and coordinated using information that can be made accessible to multiple audiences and stakeholders. This included an exploration of national and global policy, considering the organisational drivers at play and the influence and impact they can have on the development of effective strategy. The workshop also considered what makes a plan realistic and the importance of language, aim, content and structure.

A key objective of the workshop was to assess what makes a strategy relevant to individuals and organisations. This includes ensuring plans are incorporated into the daily activities and governance of an organisation and viewed without burden. It also stresses the importance of self-diagnosis and peer review to ensure an organisation’s strategy is fit-for-purpose both before and after publication.

The Zero Waste Scotland support programme has been running since August 2015 and is supporting 20 public sector organisations to develop effective and compliant documents by early 2016. It is anticipated that the project will leave an enduring legacy with the creation of regional carbon practitioner networks that form a living collaborative network with the necessary skills, material and relationships to continue long after the support programme has ceased.

The final workshop in the programme will take place in early 2016.