Case Study

Climate action planning in tourism for Scotland

The Travel Foundation has recently been supporting Scotland to be a leading destination on climate action planning.

Scotland’s tourism industry has embarked upon its Net Zero Pathway – an ambitious climate action programme designed to equip and enable the tourism sector to transition to a low carbon future. VisitScotland has already demonstrated leadership in this area, being the first national tourism organisation to become a signatory of Tourism Declares a Climate Emergency and part of the drafting committee for the Glasgow Declaration on climate action.

The Destination Climate Action Planning Project

We helped VisitScotland and the Enterprise Network (Scottish EnterpriseHighlands and Islands Enterprise, and South of Scotland Enterprise) kickstart their work on destination climate action planning by launching pilot schemes in Glasgow, the Outer Hebrides, and Inverness & Loch Ness (chosen with the aim of representing different tourism types and contexts). We then helped these three destinations to develop a framework to guide climate action planning, produce their initial Climate Action Plans, and act as a demonstration for other Scottish destinations.


Working with the three pilot destinations, Glasgow, the Outer Hebrides and Inverness & Loch Ness as well as others across Scotland, we provided the knowledge, relationships, tools, and inspiration needed to effectively integrate climate action within their strategies, policies, and plans. Our activities included the following:

  • Introduction to Destination Climate Action Planning: two online workshops at the start and end of the work, enabling wider Scottish destinations to learn from experts, and from each other, about the five pathways for action identified in the Glasgow Declaration
  • Bespoke support for the three pilot destinations to help them with development of their Initial Climate Action Plan, centred around a series of Climate Quick Wins, as well as laying the building blocks for future planning
  • Provision of tools to support the action-planning methodology


  • Initial climate action plans developed for three Scottish destinations – Glasgow, the Outer Hebrides and Inverness & Loch Ness
  • Training content and tools to accelerate climate action knowledge and capacity in destinations

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