Committee on Climate Change: UK Credibility Rests on Government Action in Next 18 Months

Following recent news that the UK has legislated for net-zero emissions by 2050 (compared to our old target of 80% by 2050), the Committee on Climate Change (CCC) has called on the UK government to show it is serious about its legal obligations to tackle and prepare for climate change.

The CCC published two new reports on reducing emissions and preparing for climate change impacts in which it says that UK action to curb greenhouse gas emissions is lagging far behind what is needed, even to meet previous, less stringent, emissions targets. Over the past year, the Government has delivered just 1 of 25 critical policies needed to get emissions reductions back on track. Meanwhile, action to prepare our homes, businesses and natural environment for a warming world is less ambitious than it was ten years ago. Of 33 key sectors assessed by the Committee, none show good progress when it comes to managing climate change risk.

Lord Deben, CCC Chairman, said: “The UK is the first major economy to set a net-zero emissions target and intends to host the world’s leaders at next year’s landmark climate conference (COP26). These are historic steps forward and position the UK at the forefront of the global low-carbon transition. But international ambition does not deliver domestic action. It’s time for the Government to show it takes its responsibilities seriously. Reducing emissions to net zero by 2050, requires real action by Government now.”