UK ‘needs billions a year’ to meet 2050 climate targets

(The Guardian, 28 Sep 2019) Report estimates up to £20bn a year in investment needed to build net-zero carbon economy.

The UK will need investment worth billions of pounds every year to remove enough greenhouse gases from the air to meet its 2050 climate targets, according to a report commissioned by the government.

The report, by analysts at Vivid Economics, estimated that the UK would need as much as £20bn a year to remove up to 130m tonnes of carbon dioxide from the air.

This will be necessary in the coming decades to make up for industries such as aviation, agriculture and heavy industry as the UK works to build a net-zero carbon economy.

“Even if emissions are reduced aggressively across the economy, the UK is expected to continue to emit a significant amount of greenhouse gases annually,” the report said. “The rate of rollout will need to be rapid, particularly in the 2030s and 2040s, and will require significant policy support.”

The report has urged ministers to consider supporting investment in greenhouse gas removal. This could mean offering new subsidies and grants for carbon capture technologies and projects, or demanding that companies that supply fossil fuels and agriculture products offset a percentage of their carbon emissions by investing in greenhouse gas removal.

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The Guardian, 28 Sep 2019: UK ‘needs billions a year’ to meet 2050 climate targets