CCC pushes for net zero emissions

The Committee on Climate Change (CCC) wants the UK to lead the fight against climate change and asks other countries to follow suit to give an even chance of staying below 1.5C temperature rises by 2100.

The independent adviser to the government on climate change notes that a decade after the Climate Change Act became law, a more ambitious goal is needed of reaching a ‘net-zero’ target by the middle of the century.

The CCC’s recommended targets, which cover all sectors of the UK, Scottish and Welsh economies, are achievable with known technologies, alongside improvements in people’s lives, and should be put into law as soon as possible, the Committee says.

The Committee’s report has called for an earlier ban to petrol and diesel vehicle sales as reported earlier here but also calls for a better supply of low-carbon electricity (which will need to quadruple by 2050), efficient buildings and low-carbon heating (required throughout the UK’s building stock).

Developing carbon capture and storage technology and low-carbon hydrogen (which are a necessity not an option), stopping biodegradable waste going to landfill, phasing-out potent fluorinated gases, increasing tree planting, and measures to reduce emissions on farms are policies that the Committee believes must be urgently strengthened.

The report strongly points to the Government as the body that must lead and provide the urgency but also notes the change in public backing there currently is, and the need for further engaged if the transition is to succeed.

Echoing the UKSIF Ownership Day comments, it also believes the UK could receive an industrial boost as it leads the way in low-carbon products and services including electric vehicles, finance and engineering, carbon capture and storage and hydrogen technologies with potential benefits for exports, productivity and jobs.

Responding to the report RenewableUK’s deputy chief executive Emma Pinchbeck said: “This report could trigger a giant leap forward in UK emissions reduction – action matched to the real dangers of climate change. The advisors at the Committee on Climate Change say that a net zero economy by 2050 is possible – but only if we put a rocket under our renewables ambition.”

Full report.

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