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Climate Change Committee: Improving the accessibility of the UK Climate Change Risk Assessment – Part 1

Lead Organisation

Sustainability West Midlands
Project Manager: Alan Carr (Senior Sustainability Adviser)

Working in partnership with London Climate Change Partnership, Sniffer, Northern Ireland Environment Link, Slingshot Design and Mike Peverill, freelancer in climate change communications


This is one of seven research projects commissioned by the Committee on Climate Change (CCC) to inform the development of the third UK Climate Change Risk Assessment (CCRA3), due for publication in 2021. The project focuses on how improvements to the accessibility of the CCRA3 Evidence Report can be made by building on the good work already carried out for CCRA2 through better use of communications, providing engagement opportunities and reframing of outputs. Part one to which this case study refers looks at the provision of advice on the CCRA Synthesis Report and other outputs formulated by stakeholder feedback and international examples that outline how CCRA3 can be better accessed by its primary intended audience, i.e. government departments and arm’s length bodies.


  • To consult with a range of stakeholders who have used CCRA2 or who intend to use CCRA3 to gain their views on the perceived accessibility of CCRA2 and/or ideas on how CCRA3 can be made more accessible.
  • To peruse climate risk assessments from other countries to glean examples that show what good accessibility could look like.
  • To consolidate, analyse and summarise this information into a report that provides recommendations on how to improve the accessibility of the CCRA Synthesis Report and other outputs where feedback is provided.


Through extensive engagement and research, the following has so far been achieved:

  • Approximately 250 stakeholders, around half of which were from the primary audience base of government departments and arm’s-length bodies, provided their ideas on how the accessibility of the CCRA can be enhanced. These were well spread across each UK nation.
  • We reviewed 25 international examples which provided some useful ideas on how to take some of the stakeholders’ thoughts forward.
  • SWM was able to provide a report to the CCC containing 36 recommendations based on this feedback, 19 of which will help to enhance the Synthesis Report and the rest will help improve other outputs of the CCRA, such as the website, communication tools and the evidence report technical chapters.
  • Initially, one of the required outputs of the second part of this contract was to development five CCRA summaries for coastal, marine, urban, rural lowlands and uplands. Through our extensive stakeholder engagement, it transpired that these summaries would not be of great benefit to those who need to digest and use the CCRA. Therefore, we have used stakeholder feedback to reshape the nature of the contracted outputs which we hope will provide CCC and government with much more useful and insightful information needed to understand the key risks of climate change to the UK.

Download the report associated with this work.

SWM and partners will continue to support CCC until summer 2021. In part two of this contract, we will help to develop a communications plan, improve the CCRA website, produce engaging factsheets outlining climate risks to key sectors and support stakeholder engagement.

The partnership, led by SWM, have demonstrated their longstanding knowledge and experience in stakeholder engagement on climate change risk and communications, especially at the regional level. This has helped us to identify the appropriate methods needed to ensure that the wealth of information contained within the CCRA Evidence Report is communicated in an effective way to Government and other public and private sector organisations. We were impressed by their ability to synthesise vast amounts of feedback and international case studies to develop a series of short, clear recommendations and we’re delighted to be working with them to help us develop and implement some of these ideas over the next 12 months.”

– Kathryn Brown, Head of Adaptation, Committee on Climate Change

Download the full case study

For further information on the project or to work with us in one of a variety of ways, please check out Our Services webpage or contact the SWM team at enquiries@swm.org.uk.

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