Sustainable Scotland: Join The Scotsman for an insight into the future at the Green Skills Conference

Society is facing enormous challenges in the bid to tackle the climate emergency and move to a more eco-friendly way of life.

But there are also opportunities.

The journey to climate-neutrality has the potential to create thousands of skilled, well-paid jobs in Scotland.

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This is the focus of The Scotsman’s second ever Green Skills Conference, which is taking place this autumn in Edinburgh, in partnership with government agency Skills Development Scotland.

The event will bring together business leaders, academics, policy-makers, government bodies and members of the public to explore how Scotland can achieve its Climate Emergency Skills Action Plan objectives by tackling key issues, from higher education right through to reskilling and upskilling employees.

The action plan sets out a series of priority areas focusing on employers, education and individuals.

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The conference will be fully ‘in-person’ for the first time, following the successful ‘hybrid’ inaugural event in 2021.

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The Scotsman editor Neil McIntosh speaks at the inaugural Green Skills Conference, a hybrid event staged partly online and partly in-person at the Royal College of Physicians in Edinburgh last year. Picture: Scott Louden

Professor Dave Reay, executive director of Edinburgh Climate Change Institute at the University of Edinburgh, is hosting the event, with Scottish Greens MSP and green skills, circular economy and biodiversity minister Lorna Slater giving the headline address.

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“As global temperatures spiral upward and workforce gaps widen across the economy, this Green Skills Conference from The Scotsman and Skills Development Scotland is more important than ever,” said Prof Dave Reay.

“Bringing together leading employers, policy-makers and training providers, the conference promises to provide a real shot in the arm for enhancing green jobs and skills opportunities right across Scotland.”

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Dr Linda Christie, head of green skills at Skills Development Scotland, added: “This event will bring together leaders from across Scotland to take part in discussion of the challenges, opportunities and progress we are making towards supporting Scotland in its green jobs and skills journey.

Andy McDonald, from Scottish Enterprise, was one of the speakers at The Scotsman's first ever Green Skills Conference, held last year. Picture: Scott Louden
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“The Climate Emergency Skills Action Plan is playing a crucial role in bringing together the range of stakeholders in Scotland's skills system.

“It ensures we are working together to maximise opportunities from new green jobs, including supporting the reskilling and upskilling of our existing workforce, that will deliver skills and job opportunities for everyone learning and working in Scotland.”

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The full line-up of speakers is yet to be confirmed but there will also be plenty of exhibitors in attendance.

The full-day conference is being held at the Cosla Conference Centre in Edinburgh on 4 October.

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Early-bird tickets are available until 12 August.

To find out more or register for The Scotsman’s Green Skills Conference, visit