Monday, 24 June, 2019

Concerted action on transport needed to back UK's net zero goal

Global carbon emissions grew by 2.0 per cent last year the highest rate since 2010-2011 a closely-watched review by energy giant BP said on Tuesday calling the trend “unsustainable”. — AFP  File Global carbon emissions rose at the fastest rate in seven years: report
Sandy Nunez | 14 June, 2019, 20:41

The Climate Change Act 2008 committed the United Kingdom to reduce net emissions by 80% from 1990 levels by 2050.

More than 10,000 people are expected in Westminster to speak to their MP about climate change as part of the Time Is Now mass lobby of Parliament on 26 June, organised by the Climate Coalition. This is the same level of funding now allocated to work related to compliance with the Climate Change Act's existing 2050 target of an 80% emissions cut, compared to a 1990 baseline.

"And it's going to act as a massive spur to the UK's bid to host the United Nations climate summit in 2020, because the UK can now legitimately say that it has done what all governments will have to soon: committing to ending its contribution to climate change".

A statement by Prime Minister Theresa May hinted that reduction in pollution, will also ultimately improve public health by cutting down NHS costs.

This legislation will mean that the United Kingdom is on track to become the first G7 country to legislate for net zero emissions, with other major economies expected to follow suit.

Green economy experts have also predicted that, by 2025, the UK's adoption of a legally binding net-zero goal will encourage other nations to follow suit. For that reason, the United Kingdom will conduct a further assessment within 5 years to confirm that other countries are taking similarly ambitious action, multiplying the effect of the UK's lead and ensuring that our industries do not face unfair competition.

May also announced setting up a Youth Steering Group to advise on government priorities for the environment. They will start their review in July.

May said: "As the first country to legislate for long-term climate targets, we can be truly proud of our record in tackling climate change". Industry and government must now work together to make the huge progress needed in the decarbonisation of heat and transport, building on the good work which has begun. This country led the world in innovation during the Industrial Revolution, and now we must lead the world to a clear, greener form of growth.

Oil gains as Opec and allies vow output cut extension
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"Standing by is not an option", she said. According to the CCC, extensive electrification, particularly of transport and heating, and a more ambitious offshore wind capacity goal of 75 GW by 2050 would be important pieces of the net-zero puzzle.

Energy UK chief executive Lawrence Slade said: "This exciting commitment from the government to meeting the 2050 net-zero target will see the UK continue its world-leading role in tackling climate change, and the energy sector is ready to lead further progress which will deliver benefits for the environment, the economy and customers".

That's the verdict reached in a new analysis by Energy Systems Catapult for the Committee on Climate Change (CCC), which says the clean transition will require lifestyle changes for the average United Kingdom household in terms of transport, diet and air travel but particularly with regards to how homes are heated.

"Almost 400,000 people are already employed in the low-carbon sector and its supply chains across the country".

Beis said it was investing in clean growth to create two million high quality jobs by 2030. Low carbon technology and clean energy contribute £44.5 billion to our economy every year.

The committee published its recommendations for the government in May this year, suggesting the country introduces a ban on new petrol and diesel cars sales from 2035.

The British government on Wednesday outlined legislation to reduce carbon emissions to net zero by 2050 in what it said would be a first for a major economy.

"This is a powerful and positive move by the Prime Minister that will give her time in office a legacy beyond Brexit".