The UK government is way off track for net zero targets
29th June 2023
The Climate Change Committee's progress report finds a worrying lack of progress by UK Government
The UK Government's advisory body, the Climate Change Committee, has released its latest progress report, and its findings aren't good. The scathing report comprehensively criticises the UK Government's plans for Net Zero, finding that they are not meeting targets across the board.
According to the body, progress on climate has gotten worse in the last year, and we're now even less likely to hit our medium-term climate targets than we were before.
So what does the report say?
Fossil Fuel Extraction
The report makes it clear that "expansion of fossil fuel production is not in line with Net Zero", and the chair, Lord Deben, said that it is “utterly unacceptable” to be granting new oil and gas licences.
The UK government needs to commit to no new oil and gas licenses if it has any hopes of getting back on track.
The Electrical Grid
Upgrades to the grid are moving too slowly to allow us to meet our climate targets. This is especially important for remote areas where the grid is vulnerable to bad weather and operators are not as efficient.
Fewer homes were insulated last year under the government-backed scheme than the year before, despite soaring energy bills and the cost of living crisis. We should be improving by 1 million per year, but we're now down to a sketchy 160,000 a year.
There has been little progress on transport emissions. The government “made a political choice” to allow an increase in road traffic, instead of encouraging public transport. The CCC recommends that we "Prioritise delivery of a new, transparent public transport fare structure that offers more affordable and reliable travel, ensuring fairness in relation to more carbon-intensive choices".
Renewables are being installed too slowly and the government has cut support in recent years - including ending 'Feed-in Tariffs', a scheme designed to promote the uptake of renewable and low-carbon electricity generation.
This isn't good enough and we need the next elected UK government to get us back on track to Net Zero by 2050.
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