UK advisors publish recommendations for net-zero emissions by 2050

(EurActiv, 2 May 2019) The UK must “set and vigorously pursue” a bold new climate change target to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to ‘net-zero’ levels by 2050 – replacing the current target of an 80% reduction against 1990 levels – according to a major new report from the Committee on Climate Change. EURACTIV’s media partner edie.net reports.

The report, published today (2 May), comes after the UK Government instructed the CCC to provide advice on the feasibility of a net-zero carbon target – a move the Committee believes could be achieved within the same cost envelope as the current less-ambitious Climate Change Act.

It follows months of calls from MPs and businesses alike to enshrine a net-zero target into UK law – a discussion that has been amplified by the recent climate school strikes and Extinction Rebellion protests.

Just yesterday, During a debate at the House of Commons, Labour party leader Jeremy Corbyn tabled a motion for the UK parliament to become the first in the world to declare a climate emergency – recognition that legislative action to date has been insufficient. In a symbolic moment, the motion was passed.

CCC chair Lord Deben said: “We can all see that the climate is changing, and it needs a serious response. The great news is that it is not only possible for the UK to play its full part – we explain how in our new report – but it can be done within the cost envelope that Parliament has already accepted.

“The Government should accept the recommendations and set about making the changes needed to deliver them, without delay.”

Scenario-mapping

The CCC recommends that a 100% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions should be legislated “as soon as possible”. Such a target would constitute the UK’s “highest possible ambition” to combatting climate change and would “send a much stronger signal internationally”.

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EurActiv, 2 May 2019: UK advisors publish recommendations for net-zero emissions by 2050