The "get learning" section of Scotland’s environment web can help learners and practitioners with maps, data, resources and useful links – all of which have been carefully matched with Curriculum for Excellence levels and National Qualifications.
Get learning about climate with this learning resource written by a qualified teacher that compliments the Scottish curriculum for excellence.
It is important for citizens to get involved in looking after the environment, because we are all part of it, everything we need comes from it, and everything we do changes it. Discover how you can get involved in Scotland's environment.
There have been some big changes to the Scotland’s environment website. We are very pleased to announce the new look design of the homepage.
Scotland's wetlands are home to a wide range of plants and animals. They also provide important environmental functions such as storing carbon and sustaining the supply of clean water.
Scotland’s woodlands and forests support a wide range of important plants and animals. For wildlife, our woodlands are in a moderately good condition now and are likely to improve in the future.
This table gives more information about which industries are producing Greenhouse Gas Emissions in Scotland
Our understanding of the sources and impacts of air pollution has improved over the years and applying it has led to better air quality in some areas. However, there are still areas in Scotland where poor air quality affects human health and the environment.
Clean Air Day in Scotland October 8th 2020
Our understanding of the sources and impacts of air pollution has improved over the years and applying it has led to better air quality in some areas. However, there are still areas in Scotland where poor air quality affects human health and the environment.
The Scottish Goverment: Renewable Electricity Statistics for Scotland. An overview of key facts and trends emerging from the publication of updated energy generation statistics for Scotland by the UK Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC) on 27th March 2014.
Get learning about air with this learning resource written by a qualified teacher that compliments the Scottish curriculum for excellence.
Get learning about energy with this learning resource written by a qualified teacher that compliments the Scottish curriculum for excellence.
Get learning about land with this learning resource written by a qualified teacher that compliments the Scottish curriculum for excellence.
Get learning about transport with this learning resource written by a qualified teacher that compliments the Scottish curriculum for excellence.
Get learning about water with this learning resource written by a qualified teacher that compliments the Scottish curriculum for excellence.
Treezilla is an exciting new platform for citizen science that everyone from school children to university students and the general public can get involved with.
Here are some mobile apps that can help you get involved and record your observations about the environment. Get in touch and let us know about any other useful apps that you would like us to share, please contact us.
Future funding support announced for Scotland’s environment web
Scotland’s Greenspace Map is now available on Scotland's environment web under the 'land' theme on the interactive map
Citizen science is about getting everyone, from experts to amateur biologists, school children or enthusiastic beginners, involved in science.
In this instalment we take a closer look at what the Scotland’s environment partners are doing to help protect and improve our forests and woodlands, and how you can get involved.
Covering topics as diverse as weather, soils, air quality, water quality and fascinating wildlife such as lampreys and riverflies, this portal provides an ideal way for you to get involved in citizen science projects. It makes it easy for you to gather, share, view and discuss your data with people that are interested in the same things as you.
The data is used to support important services such as weather and flood forecasting, and the management of our water resources.
You can help to collect the data and information that will improve our understanding of Scotland’s environment by taking part in a ‘citizen science’ project. Or you can get involved in ‘citizen action’ projects that help to protect and improve our environment. Project finder helps you find the activity you would like to get involved in.
The environment needs you! Get involved in recording your observations about the local environment to help us understand how it is changing. Data is needed on many different environmental issues, and you can submit your data in different ways.
Scotland’s environment web has created a new working partnership between Scottish Environment Protection Agency, Scottish Natural Heritage and the Forestry Commission Scotland to develop a new interactive mapping tool on the their website.
Riverfly Partnership tutors deliver one-day workshops to fishing clubs and other organisations committed to establishing a group to monitor the biological water quality of their local waters.
Data analysis applications present data in an interactive format of graphs, tables and maps. Export data views as images, CSV files and PDF documents for use in reports and presentations
This teaching package contains interactive teaching material, classroom activities and lab experiments to make learning about air quality fun. Tailored for primary schools and secondary school geography and science, you can also request a sensor to get pupils involved in monitoring and analysing air quality data around your school.
Blog in the 'part of Scotland's environment' series: The NBN Atlas Scotland is a free online tool that educates and informs people about Scotland’s natural world. It helps to improve biodiversity knowledge, opens up research possibilities and is changing the way environmental management is carried out, not only in Scotland, but across the UK.
The Scotland Counts project aims to ensure that every individual and community in Scotland has the opportunity to develop skills and confidence to understand their local environment through Citizen Science.
Work alongside other volunteers and project staff to remove target invasive non-native species from across northern Scotland.
This interactive map service contains the following Forestry Commission National Forest Estate data layers
Finding information, data visualisation & connectivity through usability tasks - Looking at Scotland's interactive map tool on Scotland's environment web
Finding information, data visualisation & connectivity through usability tasks - Looking at Scotland's interactive map tool themes, comments and actions on Scotland's environment web
This is an interactive tool that presents information about SEPA permitted waste sites in a series of tables and charts. The tool covers all waste and landfill sites in Scotland as well as their capacities and types of waste handled.
Here are some apps that can help view and interact with environmental data on your mobile device. Get in touch and let us know about any other useful apps that you would like us to share, please contact us.
Scotland’s environment web partners have produced a range of useful maps that will help you find trusted and authoritative data.
If you wish to get in touch with Scotland's environment, or if you have other comments or feedback to make about this site, please complete the contact form.
This interactive map service contains the following Forestry Commission National Forest Estate data layers:- National Forest Estate - Forest Parks National Forest Estate - Roads National Forest Estate - Sub-compartments National Forest Estate - Legal Boundary National Forest Estate - Ownership National Forest Estate - Recreation Points National Forest Etstae - Recreation Routes National Forest Estate - Recreation Areas Galloway Dark Skies Park The layers can be switched on and off independently of each other. Forestry Commission Scotland would like to thank Scottish Natural Heritage for their co-operation in hosting this web service on behalf of FCS.
Find out more about the issues facing Scotland's environment, with links to useful data, contacts and information from our partners.
Citizen science involves the participation of the wider community (particularly non-scientists) in scientific projects. The benefits of citizen science include the facility for extensive data collection and the interaction between scientists and the community. In addition citizen scientists get a chance to inform scientists, and in the process, learn more about their environment.
Looking at how to use pitfall traps to sample invertebrate populations in an area. It would be impossible to count and identify all of the bugs and beasts on the ground around me here today, so by using a pitfall trap we can get an idea of what's around.
Scotland’s land provides us with a wealth of benefits, such as food, timber, clean water, energy, and a space for recreation. However, we still demand more. The Land Use Strategy addresses how we can sustainably manage our land to ensure we get the most from it.
For the first time, many of the public bodies who are responsible for regulating and improving the environment have worked together to describe the condition of our environment. We want to progressively increase the information available, to deliver our ambition of providing the best assessment of the state of Scotland’s environment and we’d like you to get involved.
This interactive tool provides a summary of sampling information provided by operators of Material Recovery Facilities (MRFs) in Scotland. Information has been gathered since October 2015 and details sampling of dry recyclable waste as it is received at the site, along with sampling of the sorted recyclate grades before they are sent off site. An associated report is available on the SEPA website. Data in this tool can be viewed by operator, reporting period, material type and supplier. The data will be updated on a quarterly basis and should be of interest to MRF operators, producers of dry recyclable waste (including local authorities), the wider waste management industry and anyone with an interest in the quality of recyclate in Scotland.
The water classification hub is an interactive tool allowing you to explore the current and historical condition of Scotland’s rivers, lochs, estuaries, coasts and groundwaters, and bathing and shellfish water protected areas. Results are updated annually and include assessments of water quality, habitat condition, access for fish migration, water flows and levels and invasive non-native species, as defined by Scottish Government Directions and the Water Framework Directive
Scotland's environment web will be increasing the opportunities for the public to get involved with Scotland’s environment and will create a forum for debate and assessment from all corners of the environmental community. People will be asked to identify the environmental problems they think are most important. They’ll also be asked to share information on the condition of their local environment, and to help shape actions to improve it.
Get involved! You can improve your understanding of the environment and learn new skills; meet new people who have similar interests to your own; improve both your health and wellbeing. Here are link to freely available resources to help you get involved in citizen science and action.
River basin management planning is about protecting and improving Scotland’s water environment in a way that balances costs and benefits to the environment, society and economy. The water environment hub is an interactive tool allowing you to explore the river basin management plans, view details on all aspects of the water environment as well as download data. The water environment hub present the plans as a narrative to help easily navigate the data behind them, allowing anyone to view Scotland’s story or to find out their local area or even the nearest water courses story.
Volunteering is a great way to get out into the countryside, meet like-mided people, keep fit and do your bit to look after this amazing place - no matter how big or small that may be.
MCS is interested in hearing about your sightings of a number of different marine species - basking sharks, marine turtles and jellyfish in UK and Irish waters. If you enjoy spending time at the coast and looking out for wildlife then please read on and get involved!
We chose to work with Space Unlimited, a Scottish social enterprise who are experts in using youth-led enquiry as a catalyst for change. Their methods build resilience, confidence and transferable life skills in young people - all relevant to the demands of the Scottish school system’s ‘Curriculum for Excellence’ They were able to connect to a local school that wanted to take advantage of the opportunity: for their young people to get a different experience; to align this work to their ‘eco-schools’ initiatives; and, to build a strong connection to SEPA and other Scotland's environment web partners
The quality of the air around us is affected by pollutants released into the atmosphere. Our understanding of of air pollution and its causes has improved significantly and citizens can get involved in monitoring. While overall air quality has improved, there are still some areas where poor air quality affects human health and the environment.
In our next instalment of our Mapvember blog series, we’re continuing to get to know the people who work behind the scenes to develop and maintain the Scotland’s environment mapping tools and are responsible for our spatial data. In this post we meet Olivia Gill, GIS developer, and Linda Gallagher, Technical Author.
Mapvember blog: As users, we interact with maps and spatial data on daily basis. But do we give much thought to how these applications are developed? How does all of this data reach the map applications that we use? And who builds them? During Mapvember we catch-up with members of the SEPA team responsible for spatial data and development of the Scotland’s environment map, to find out more about what they do and get to know the people behind the map.
Over the next few weeks we’ll be taking a closer look at the topic rocks and landforms; exploring the exciting projects our partners are working on in this area and looking at the maps, data tools and information available on our website to help you find out more about this fascinating topic. And to get things started, in this first blog we’ve asked Hugh Barron from the British Geological Survey (BGS) to explain more about why rocks and landforms are an important part of Scotland’s environment.
Saturday 21 April 2018 is World Fish Migration day, a global event to create awareness of the importance of keeping rivers free from man-made barriers to fish migration. In Scotland, we know of hundreds of man-made barriers that are preventing fish from accessing essential spawning habitat in our rivers. But it’s likely that there are many more out there that we don’t know about. To help us identify where these barrier are, we have developed a barrier recording ‘app' that can be downloaded to a smartphone and used to help us to help the fish. Here you can also find more information about this project and how to get involved.
Scotland's environment website launched on UN World Environment Day
For the first time, the state of Scotland’s environment is being summarised by a range of expert panels.
The world wide web has revolutionised how we communicate, find and use information and data. In celebration of its launch seventeen years ago on 23rd August, this is the first of a two-part blog that is shining a light on the web team that brought Scotland’s environment web to life.
Leading Edge: Putting Scotland in the forefront of information sharing, data visualisation and citizen engagement
During Mapvember, we've been introducing you to the team behind the Scotland's environment map and spatial data. In this post we catch-up with SEPA GIS Developer Bruce Smith, and find out about the role he has played in developing our map.
The quality of the air around us is affected by substances released into the atmosphere through human activities, such as transport and industry, as well as from natural sources such as sea salt and volcanic activity.
As part of our spotlight on Biodiversity, our blog recently featured two new biodiversity information and data resources that are now available on Scotland’s environment website – Habitat Map of Scotland (HabMoS) and Ecosystem Health Indicators. But we have much more information and data to help your understanding of Scotland’s valuable biodiversity and influence new actions for its care and restoration.
With around 19,000km of coastline (that's 8% of Europe's coast) we are quite literally surrounded by the sea - supporting our economy, environment, culture and well-being.
We all produce it, households and businesses alike. While as a nation we might be starting to reduce the amount we produce and recycle more, waste is still a very real problem facing our environment.
Mention 'Scotland' and 'history' to anyone and they'll no doubt have images of castles, kilted warriors and Nessie running through their minds. And while these are all notable parts of our heritage, they are by no means all we have to offer.
This learning resource about transport was written by a qualified school teacher and compliments the Scottish Curriculum for Excellence. This is aimed at Broad General Education - early to fourth level.
Saturday 3 March was international Open Data Day – an annual celebration of open data all over the world, and an opportunity to highlight the benefits of open data to government, business and communities. Here we'll show you how Scotland’s environment web is working with partners to mobilise environmental data and extending its reach and influence by turning it into accessible information and knowledge.
SEPA successfully applied to the LIFE+ Programme for matched funding to support Scotland's environment web partnership initiative. A project with a total value of 4.8 million Euros commenced on September 1st 2011, for development of the Scotland's environment web partnership and website until August 2015.
This learning resource about transport was written by a qualified school teacher and compliments the Scottish Curriculum for Excellence. This is aimed at Senior level.
Blog in the Rocks and landforms themed series: There’s a whole world of rocks and ‘landforms’ hidden beneath the waves, shaping the ocean floor and providing valuable habitats for marine life. We asked Marine Scotland to tell us about one of their research projects – OFFCON – that aims to map the seafloor in an area to the west of Scotland.
“The future of landscape-scale conservation is not just about delivering more, bigger, better and joined up nature reserves. It is also about winning hearts and minds.” Sir John Lawton Landscape-scale conservation involves working in collaboration at a big scale to deliver more benefits for the environment and people.
With 18% of land in Scotland covered by woodland, and our forests contributing significantly to the wellbeing of our economy, wildlife and our own lives, we certainly have good cause to celebrate.
Scotland’s freshwaters are essential for our health and prosperity. As well as being used for drinking, water is used by industry (e.g. distilling whisky and supporting fisheries), for producing energy (hydropower), and for recreational activities such as bird-watching, angling and water sports.
This learning resource about land was written by a qualified school teacher and compliments the Scottish Curriculum for Excellence. This is aimed at Broad General Education - early to fourth level.
The most successful countries in the 21st century will be resource efficient, circular economies which do not produce significant quantities of waste. Products, materials and resources will be used for as long as possible and maximum value will be derived from them.
By taking part in the Sunset/Sunrise Survey you can find out about your local bats and help us find new bat roosts.
SCRAPbook is an innovative third-sector collaboration to capture and map all of mainland Scotland’s coastline and inshore waters through aerial photography to identify litter and pollution hotspots…….and we need your help!
Scottish weather is often dreich, but never dull. We subconsciously include a daily weather observation in our pleasantries, which is not surprising considering its bearing in all aspects of life and the general mood of the nation. Taking this obsession a step further, there is a long tradition of rainfall measuring by the public. As well as being an interesting hobby, the data is very useful and SEPA is keen to encourage members of the public, schools and businesses to begin rainfall observing to help capture Scotland complex rainfall patterns.
North Harris has an extensive network of paths and tracks which is unique in the Western Isles where there are otherwise few well established paths.
The Predatory Bird Monitoring Scheme (PBMS) investigates the impact of chemical pollutants on predatory bird populations. This is achieved through the measurement of contaminants in the tissues of raptors found dead and submitted to the scheme by members of the public.
Across Scotland, volunteer Rainfall Observers are collecting extremely valuable rainfall data on a daily basis to improve weather and flood forecasting. SEPA would love you to join this band of volunteers, and has created a brand new online portal to make it easy to gather and share your data.
Citizen Science project surveying garden and school ponds to see how good they are for wildlife.
The Riverfly Partnership is UK wide initiative bringing together anglers, conservationists, entomologists, scientists, water course managers and relevant authorities to protect and conserve the river environment. The project trains local enthusiasts to carry out sampling and counting of freshwater invertebrate animals to detect changes in the quality of river water.
This is the first blog in a series looking at the role of our partners in Scotland's environment web. This blog features the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA), the organisation responsible for managing, maintaining and further developing Scotland’s environment web.
Scotland is renowned worldwide as being a place of outstanding natural beauty. We owe that reputation to the diverse range of Scotland’s biodiversity – plants, animals, and habitats. Scotland’s nature can, and does, inspire our people. We owe our own wellbeing to our biodiversity and it’s vital that we all play our part in safeguarding it and reducing the threats facing it.
Would you like to find out more about your local air quality? Why not use our simple introductory level lichen air survey to find out about the health of your local environment. A citizen science survey suitable for individuals, groups or schools.
Walk in the Park health walks utilise the beautiful and nurturing surroundings of Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park. We are now one of the best examples of a successful health walk programme in Scotland.
The Polli:Nation survey is a large-scale national survey that will provide answers to important research questions about the health and status of pollinating insects across the UK.
Working closely with local communities, the project is seeking to improve conditions for red squirrels across Scotland, and combat the spread of the non-native grey squirrel.
Volunteers needed! We’re looking for your help and feedback on the Scotland’s soils website and would like to invite you to take part in a short usability test.
The new look Scotland's soils website is released as a beta version. The new look is a result of user feedback and usability testing, and has many improved features to make it easier to access soil data and information.
Resources and useful links available relating to the air topic
Looking at the importance of getting out and about in Scotland's environment and the benefits to mental and physical health as a result. Also looks at what partner organisations are doing to contribute to the health agenda.
This learning resource about climate was written by a qualified school teacher and compliments the Scottish Curriculum for Excellence. This is aimed at broad general education - early to fourth level.
A platform for the sharing of current weather observations from all around the globe. Send the Met Office local observations of weather in your area.
In this blog, we’re shining a light on, and celebrating, some of Scotland’s most dedicated volunteer rainfall observers, who have been actively recording rainfall data, every day for decades – some dating as far back as the 1960’s. This is extremely valuable data to record in all weathers – even during the dry spell that we’ve had recently.
In this blog we introduce you to the 'part of Scotland's environment' network of websites and explain more about how they provide access to trusted and authoritative data and information.
Scotland has around 18,000 km of coastline (when measured at 1:10,000 scale). The area from the coast to our EEZ (Exclusive Economic Zone) limits (462,263 km2) is around six times the size of the land area of Scotland.
Blog from Habitat Map of Scotland (HabMoS) team: What habitat you would like for Christmas. Maybe Caledonian forest, for a peaceful walk through the trees, or would you like some sand dunes? Perhaps you would choose Machair, a wind-swept saltmarsh or a good bit of blanket bog? We asked the Habitat Map of Scotland project board members to tell us what habitat they would like to unwrap at Christmas. Is your favourite here?
This learning resource about water was written by a qualified school teacher and compliments the Scottish Curriculum for Excellence. This is aimed at Broad General Education - early to fourth level.
This year sees the fourth national invasive species week, which runs from 23 to 29 March 2018. Many of our partners are involved in tackling and managing invasive non-native species (INNS) in Scotland, and in this blog Jo Long from the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) explain a bit more about this work.
Yesterday was world water day and this year’s theme was “The answer is in nature” – exploring nature-based solutions to water challenges we face such as flooding and water pollution. Scotland has a rich and varied water environment, but other aspects of our environment have an important role to play in addressing some key challenges we face. You can find information and data about the water environment on Scotland’s environment web.
This learning resource about energy was written by a qualified school teacher and compliments the Scottish Curriculum for Excellence. This is aimed at Senior level.
This learning resource about energy was written by a qualified school teacher and compliments the Scottish Curriculum for Excellence. This is aimed at Broad General Education - early to fourth level.
Today is World Soil Day. So it seems fitting that we bring you a blog all about the Scotland's soils website, which is one of the websites that forms the 'part of Scotland's environment' network. To tell us more about the website, we asked Karen Dobbie, Principal Soil Scientist at SEPA and part of the team responsible for the Scotland’s soils website. This is what she had to say.
Guest blog from the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) on recyclate quality and the materials recovery code: Many people don't give much thought to what happens to their waste once their bins have been collected. So they don't realise that the separately collected recyclable materials are put through a series of sorting processes, using a mix of machinery and hand separation.
This learning resource about air was written by a qualified school teacher and compliments the Scottish Curriculum for Excellence. This is aimed at Broad General Education - early to fourth level.
This learning resource about air was written by a qualified school teacher and compliments the Scottish Curriculum for Excellence. This is aimed at Senior level.
This learning resource about water was written by a qualified school teacher and compliments the Scottish Curriculum for Excellence. This is aimed at Senior level.
Scotland’s Environment aims to provide a website that is usable and accessible to all. Our objective is to conform to guidelines and standards for UK Government websites, which support the W3C's Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 at Level AA.
Scotland’s environment web, managed by the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA), is delivering a shared hub for environmental information and data.
Clean Air Day 2020
This learning resource about climate was written by a qualified school teacher and compliments the Scottish Curriculum for Excellence. This is aimed at senior level.
We now understand more about the causes and effects of air pollution but need clearer, more compelling ways to explain this to people living in Scotland so they make everyday transport choices which reduce air pollution, especially in urban areas.
Fifty years on from the introduction of the Clean Air Act, air pollution is still one of the biggest environmental threats we face.
Waste data is essential for knowing what waste is produced in Scotland, and how and where it is managed. As Scotland moves towards a more circular economy – where products and materials are kept in high value use for as long as possible – this latest waste data strategy outlines five priority actions being taken to improve our understanding of how products and materials flow through our economy.
Environmental evidence underpins everything we do to plan and make decisions on the design and delivery of high-quality, successful places in Scotland. New evidence approaches and collaboration need to be developed so that our key information can be used more effectively to help support the delivery of key priorities for our future places and people.
This month Willie takes us on a trip to his old stomping grounds of Sutherland and shares his thoughts on the changes he's seen over his career as a soil scientist.
Introduction to Willie Towers - the Scotland's environment web blogger - and his new blog about his travels around Scotland
Search and discover spatial data published by our partner organisations. View data individually or in any combination that you choose and share your data view . Search by postcode, grid reference, location or use the geolocate function to explore data within your current location.
The world wide web has revolutionised how we communicate, find and use information and data. In celebration of the launch of the world wide web seventeen years ago on 23rd August, this is the second of a two part blog that is shining a light on the web team that brought Scotland’s environment web to life.
Scotland’s soils are an important natural resource. They play an essential part in all our lives, providing us with a wide range of benefits. Some of these benefits are obvious, like growing food, while many are less clear, like filtering water, reducing flood risk and influencing climate.
A collection of education resources that compliment the Scottish curriculum for excellence on several topics including: air, water, land, climate, transport, energy ans citizen science.
Ecosystem health indicators are measures which help us to understand where action should be taken to restore ecosystem health and associated benefits.
Scotland is renowned worldwide as being a place of outstanding natural beauty. We owe that reputation to the diverse range of Scotland’s biodiversity.
This learning resource about land was written by a qualified school teacher and compliments the Scottish Curriculum for Excellence. This is aimed at Senior level.
Scotland’s rocks and landforms provide a range of benefits and help us to understand how the Earth has evolved. They provide us with valuable economic resources and naturally regulate hazards and flooding.
A summary report card on the state and trend assessments of the 2014 state of environment report. Independent expert assessments of current state and future trends are shown as a series of spectrum diagrams.
Scotland generally has cool summers, mild winters and rain falls throughout the year. Changes in our climate over the next few decades are unavoidable because of the greenhouse gases already in the atmosphere.
Scotland’s woodlands and forests support a wide range of important plants and animals. Rare and threatened species are more often found in and around semi-natural woodlands, but many have also colonised planted forests.
The 2014 state of the environment report provides an assessment of Scotland’s environment and how it is changing. It is based on assessments that have used data from a wide range of sources. It was written by expert authors from different environmental organisations.