Our Letter the Scottish Government on Climate Change Adaptation Bill


Culture Counts wrote to the Director of Energy and Climate Change at the Scottish Government. Our letter is in response to the call for views on the Climate Change Adaptation Programme. Climate change is a cultural as much as a technological, economic or scientific issue.

Image used with permission under Open Government License

Image used with permission under Open Government License


Our Letter

We hope to be able to assist the Scottish Government in connecting climate change adaptation to the cultural sector; and the cultural sector to climate adaptation, alongside and in alignment with Creative Carbon Scotland. Culture Counts wrote to Kersti Berge, Director of Energy and Climate Change at the Scottish Government on 5 April 2019.

From our letter;

The National Performance Framework now includes an outcome for culture ‘We are creative, and our vibrant and diverse cultures are celebrated and enjoyed widely'.

The cultural sector is linked to Sustainable Development Goals for:

  • Gender Equality

  • Reduced inequalities

  • Sustainable cities and communities

In addition, climate change is a cultural as much as a technological, economic or scientific issue. Adaptation to the impacts of climate change, as much as the mitigation efforts, will bring about and require changes to the ways in which we live – changes which are fundamentally cultural.

The climate change adaptation programme, unfortunately, makes no mention of culture, though I understand that this is a new area to consider in terms of how outcomes can be achieved using the cultural sector as a vehicle for change.

The cultural sector has so much to offer particularly in terms of changing perceptions of climate change. We have a vibrant theatre, film and publishing sector who would all be keen to help the Scottish Government achieve success by creating sustainable cities and communities.

Cultural practitioners can also bring different perspectives and skills to adaptation work. Projects in Aberdeen and Fife where artists have been asked to contribute to adaptation projects have demonstrated the success of involving these different approaches to work with communities and organisations facing adaptation challenges.

Cultural organisations are already thinking about adaptation: Creative Carbon Scotland enabled Edinburgh Adapts, Aberdeen Adapts and Climate Ready Clyde to lead workshops with relevant organisations at a conference last autumn and around 20 cultural SMEs attended a workshop with Climate Ready Clyde in Glasgow in March.


Scottish Government Climate Change Adaptation Consultation

Scottish Government are consulting on Scotland’s Climate Change Adaptation Programme 2019-24. The programme will be published later in 2019.

Culture Counts are encouraging members to respond to the consultation saying that culture needs to be part of the programme, as without it the transformation change won’t happen. Final date for submissions is 9 April 2019. Read our News post on the Consultation here.



Members are the major cultural organisations in Scotland. Individuals can join (free) as supporters of Culture Counts.